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Marianne Strauß

June 07, 1923 - December 22, 1996
Marianne Strauß Marianne Strauß 

Marianne Strauß was born in Essen. On August 31, 1943, the Gestapo came to pick up the Strauß family—Marianne, her parents and her younger brother Richard—for deportation to Theresienstadt. Up to that point, her father Siegfried Strauß had been negotiating with the counterintelligence department over an exit permit to Sweden for the family. Only 20-year-old Marianne managed to escape the Gestapo. She fled to members of a little-known Essen group formed in the 1920s, calling itself Bund. Society for Socialist Life. Bund members found her accommodation for two or three weeks at a time in towns in the Ruhr region and other areas. These activists included Fritz and Maria Briel. The couple had distributed anti-Nazi flyers in Essen in 1933 and been briefly imprisoned, but remained members of the group. Of all the relationships Marianne Strauß formed during this period, that to the Briels was probably the closest. This photo of her with Wolfgang Briel, Fritz and Maria’s son, was taken during this time. Marianne Strauß had to keep moving from one place to the next so as not to arouse neighbors’ suspicions. She was liberated by the U.S. Army’s arrival in Düsseldorf on April 17, 1945.