Despite being a successful physician in Stuttgart, Erica Kanter’s father, Dr. Paul L. Hecht, in 1935 applied and had to wait interminably for an immigration visa for the United States. Visas were limited by quota.
The Nazis sent Erica’s father to Dachau, but he was able to negotiate his freedom because of the exit visas he had applied-for earlier, and for his service the German army during WWI. After spending convalescence back in Stuttgardt, he left without his wife for Switzerland.
During her father’s internment in Dachau, Erica’s mother found a way to safety for her children. Lisa, Ted and Erica were sent to three different English families and were booked passage on the Kindertransport, a train which rescued almost 10,000 Jewish children from certain peril. Erica spent over a year with her foster family, the Cornishes, speaking English the best she could.
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