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Annelies Herzl, 95, Rye Resident, Holocaust Survivor, Mental Health Counselor, Optimist

Annelies Herzl
Annelies Herzl Photo Credit: Contributed

Annelies Herzl died on Sunday, Dec. 22 after living with Alzheimer’s for more than 10 years.

Annelies was born in Neustadt an der Sale, Germany, on Nov 30, 1924 to Irma and Selig Lustig. Her loving husband, Henry, predeceased Annelies in 1991. She is survived by her children Roy Herzl of Mamaroneck (wife Allison) and Vicki Herzl Watkins of Alplaus (husband Gray) as well as her five grandchildren: Adam Herzl, Michelle Herzl, Lindsay Herzl Aronow (husband Bryan), Steve Watkins and Jenny Watkins.

Annelies was a Holocaust survivor. Annelies and her family fled Germany in 1933 due to the rising anti-Semitism under Hitler. They lived peacefully in Holland until Hitler’s invasion in 1940. She survived the war due to the kindness of strangers—14 families who were members of the Dutch Underground—who took her into their homes and sheltered her from the Nazis. Sadly, her mother, father and brother, Bernd, did not survive.

Annelies came to New York City after the war. She met Henry through family friends in 1946 and they were married a year later. They moved to Rye in 1952.

Annelies and Henry were devoted to each other and to their family. They were both so grateful to be able to start a new life in America. Annelies worked as a real estate agent in Rye during the 1960s and later earned a degree as a paraprofessional social worker from The New School in New York City. She worked at the New Rochelle Guidance Center as a mental health counselor for over 30 years. She also organized and facilitated support groups for Holocaust Survivors and Second Generation Survivors at Westchester Jewish Community Services.

Annelies had an incredible intuition about people and was able to offer guidance in such a kind and supportive way. Despite her difficult youth, she remained an optimist through and through. Annelies will always be remembered for her seemingly endless capacity to love as well as her compassion, generosity, kindness and gentle strength.

The family would like to thank the staff at the Eddy Village Green in Cohoes and at the Osborn in Rye for the care they provided Annelies over the past 10 years.

Annelies was interred at the Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale. A private celebration of her life will be held at a later date. Donations in Annelies' memory can be made to Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research Foundation or to the W estchester Jewish Community Services (Holocaust Survivor Groups) . Funeral arrangements were by the Levine Memorial Chapel in Albany.

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