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Eddy Behrendt, 75, founder and first president of the U.S.-based Kindertransport Association, died Nov. 9 in Eugene, Ore. He established the group in 1989.
Born in Danzig, Behrendt escaped from the Nazi Holocaust at age 9 to England in one of the Kindertransports, a rescue operation for Jewish children, primarily from Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia.
He lived in England until he was 16, then spent a brief period of time in Palestine (now Israel) before coming to America to be with his father, who had survived the Holocaust and immigrated to New York.
In 1993, Behrendt retired as senior director of corporate personnel with American Home Products (Wyeth) Corporation. He and his wife, Sarah Behrendt, moved to the Phoenix/Scottsdale area, where he served on the board of the Phoenix Holocaust Survivors Association.
In 1995, they settled in Eugene, where Eddy Behrendt founded the "Reach and Teach" program, traveling across the country for more than four years speaking on the Holocaust and related events.
He served as an advisor to the Committee on the Genocide and Intolerance of the National Council of Teachers in English, and presented various papers on Holocaust education worldwide.
In addition to holding an undergraduate and graduate degree, Behrendt served four years in the U.S. Army during the Korean war as a member of the Trust Tankers stationed in Trieste, Italy.
In addition to his wife, Behrendt is survived by children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, a brother, a sister-in-law and many friends and colleagues.
A memorial fund is being established and contributions can be sent to: the Eddy Behrendt Memorial, 1574 Coburg Road, Eugene, OR 97401.