I. Introduction The World Book Dictionary defines a hero as a boy or man admired for his bravery, great deeds or noble qualities. Oskar Schindler was nothing short of this. Schindler displayed all of these traits during the Second World War.

(The World Book, 2002) II. Early Life Born in Zwittau, Czechoslovakia in 1908 which was home to many ethnic Germans. (The World Book, 2002) The closest neighbors were a Jewish rabbi family, and the two sons became Oskar's best friends. The family was one of the most wealthy and prominent in Zwittau, but as a result of the deep economic depression of the 1930's, the family firm became bankrupt. (This Oskar Schindler, 2003) During the 1930's Schindler became a sales manager of an electrical engineering firm in Brno. In 1939 the Germans invaded Poland and Schindler moved to Kravow.

While in Kravow he took over a bankrupt enamelware factory where he made a fortune. (The World Book, 2002) III. During The War During the war Schindler used the enamelware factory to fill military munitions contracts. At his factory Schindler made sure "his" workers were well fed and safe by explaining to the Germans that his workers were essential to munitions production.

Because Schindler was able to convince the Nazi's his workers were essential he saved more than 1, 200 Jews. In 1944 Schindler moved the factory to Oskar Schindler 4 Moravia when the Red Army closed in on Krakow. (Compton's 1997) Even for the people he saved, it was difficult to conceive why Schindler had risked his life to save the Jews. He had a well earned reputation for drinking, gambling, and womanizing, and he had a comfortable relationship with the Nazis. Liam Neeson, the actor who played him in the film "Schindlers list", believed that Schindler was possessed with remarkable bravery and financial wizardry only during those few short years. (Compton's 1997) Schindler persuaded the Nazis to let him open a new factory in Brunnlitz, where he made a list of over 1, 100 Jews who were to work at his factory, which came to be famous as "Schindlers List." Schindler also brought more than 100 Jews into the camp in the following months.

The Russian's freed the Jew's in 1945 Army. (The World Book, 2002) IV. Post War In May 1945, it was all over. The Russians moved into Brunnlitz.

The previous evening, Schindler gathered everyone together in the factory and took a deeply emotional leave of them. He told them they were free, he was a fugitive. "My children, you are saved. Germany has lost the war." He asked that they did not go into the neighboring houses to rob and plunder.

"Prove yourself worthy of the millions of victims among you and refrain from any individual acts of revenge and terror." He announced that three yards of fabric were to be given to each prisoner from his warehouse stores as well as a bottle of vodka. (Which brought a high price on the black market) Oskar Schindler 5 At five after midnight, when he was certain that his Jews were finally out of danger, Schindler then left the factory saying "I must leave now, auf wieder sehen." (This Oskar Schindler, 2003) Schindler died in 1974 in Frankfurt, Germany. According to his wishes, his body was brought to Jerusalem, and survivors carried his coffin through the city to a Roman Catholic cemetery on Mount Zion, where he was buried. (Compton's 1997) Schindlers life after the war was a long series of failures. He tried without success to be a film producer and was deprived of his nationality immediately after the war. Threats from former Nazis meant that he felt insecure in post-war Germany, and he applied for an entry permit to the United States.

This was refused, as he had been a member of the nazi party. (This Oskar Schindler, 2003) Oskar Schindler earned the everlasting gratitude of his Schindler jews. No matter why, no matter that he was an alcoholic and a shameless womanizer of the worst sort, no matter he was no saint and left his wife, what matters to his jews is that he surfaced from the chaos of madness and risked everything for them. And generations will remember him for what he did. No matter how many businesses Schindler failed in, he was a success in life. (Why Did He...

2003).