Joseph Gárdos

גרדוש יוסף

Gárdos József

Born in Újpest in June 1921

Died in Hungary in 1945

Member of “Dror Habonim”

Joseph came from an assimilated Jewish environment. He joined the movement in the 1930’s. From an early age he was an instructor and teacher for the younger members. At the age of fourteen Joseph already edited the movement’s newspaper. As the refugees from Slovakia started arriving, he met them and took care of them. Some of them he accommodated in his own flat. He helped some refugees find work and others to continue their voyage to Eretz Israel (Palestine). After the German invasion of Hungary on 19.3.1944, Joseph walked around under the fictitious identity of a generations long Christian and later as a citizen of San Salvador. He took part in the rescue of young Jews from the forced labour camps and persuaded Jews to run away from the transports to Poland.
Joseph managed to penetrate the ghettos of Munkács and Huszt carrying forged documents which he gave to the relatives of comrades in the movement. He took part in the planning of the tiyul. He arrived in Arad in Romania, made contact with smugglers and set up “stations” on the route of the fugitives.
After the liberation Joseph returned to Hungary, and took part in setting up children’s homes and the revival of the movement. He was in charge of educational activities. At that time he was already very ill but continued his activities until his last day. Kibbutz Gardosh-Parod was named after him.