On May 13, 1939, the Reif family began their voyage as first class passengers aboard the Saint Louis. They were among 937 passengers (over 900 were Jewish) thrilled to be leaving the Nazi’s net .
The captain of the St. Louis, was a remarkable man by the name of Gustav Schroeder. He disagreed with the Nazi ideology and for six years he resisted requests to join the Nazi party. The St. Louis was part of the Haburg-America Line (Hapag) and on the voyage prior to the Reif’s voyage, a line official came aboard the St. Louis and warned Captain Schroeder that if he did not join the Nazi Party, his job as captain was in jeopardy.
Captain Schroeder ordered the man off his ship.
If only more people acted like Captain Schroeder.
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