Honoring Georg Hildebrandt
"Honoring Georg Hildebrandt." Volk auf dem Weg, October 2003, 28.
Translation from German to English by Alex Herzog,
On July 27, 2003, in the renowned Luise-Ebert Senior Center
in Heidelberg, the oldest well-known and active German from Russia,
Georg Hildebrandt, was honored -- in double fashion.
|State Secretary Michael Sieber presents
the Federal Order of Merit to Goerg Hildebrandt on July 27,
One of two occasions was a previously postponed celebration, now attended
by an extended circle of family and friends, of Georg Hildebrandt's
92nd birthday; the second occasion being the presentation of the Federal
Order of Merit by Michael Sieber, State Secretary. Among many others,
Bundestag representatives Vera Langsfeld (CDU) and Dirk Niebel (FDP),
had sent congratulatory messages and greetings. Follow countryman
Dr. Johannes Derzap of Munich delivered the speech honoring Georg
Hildebrandt. Klaus German and his wife had traveled from Berlin to
be in attendance as well. Mr. German had distinguished himself, particularly
in the 1980s, by his efforts on behalf of all those Germans from Russia
who had been detained by Gorbachev, with all measures imaginable,
from leaving the Soviet Union.
The honoree took special pleasure in the performance of a musical
bouquet of songs by the Choir of the Luise-Ebert Center, the most
famous of these songs being "Ich hab' mein Herz in Heidelberg
verloren [I left my heart in Heidelberg]."
Asked about what he had dreamed for in his youth, Hildebrandt answered
without hesitation: "I always dreamed of returning home to Germany."
However, his dream was not fulfilled until 1974, following forty years
of more or less permanent detention in Soviet camps and jails far,
far from home.
|Following the ceremony Georg Hildebrandt
poses with his dearest female friends representing three generations
(left to right): Tamara Wiens, Laura Wiens, and Marlis Lowka.
Today Hildebrandt appears as a very sprightly 92-year-old, who lives
in the fine environment of a comfortable home for seniors and keeps
up wonderful relationships with the German-Russian family Wiens, with
his neighbor in the Luise-Ebert Center, Marlis Lowka, and with numerous
friends near and far.
During many conversations, he is the center of everyone's attention
and is asked to answer many questions about his life in the Soviet
Union and about the book that deals with his own fateful story, "Wieso
lebst du noch [Why are you still alive]?" The answer to that
question is contained in his book, which you may order from the Landsmannschaft.
Every one of us should read it!
Our appreciation is expressed to Alex Herzog for translation
of this article.
to use any images from the GRHC website may be requested
by contacting Michael