Madurodam / A legacy of George Maduro

‘George Maduro; Knight without Fear and beyond reproach’. That’s the title of George’s autobiography as written by Kathleen Brandt-Casey, and what a befitting title! Last year summer, as a birthday treat one of my besties took me to a place I had never heard of; Madurodam! She didn’t explain to me what it was so I had no idea where we were going or what we were going to do there. On arrival at madurodam, we started in the cinema hall for a brief introduction of what Madurodam is and who it’s named after. Just by watching the short video, I was in tears (I can be really soppy sometimes) and I could not wait to see the place!

From that introduction, I stepped out of the cinema into what would be ‘my happy place’ a beautiful miniature city of Amsterdam, a very clever work of art named after the amazing hero George Maduro.

There’s something about the place, I cannot put a finger on but I was captivated! I mean the place is a memorial so its supposed to be a sad and gloomy but actually I later found out that when Jossy and Becca Maduro had this memorial commissioned in honour of their son, they wanted it to be a happy place and that it was and is for me. I had the most amazing day walking around the park and looking at all the art and beauty of this place. On our way out, my bestie then bought me George Maduro’s autobiography as an extra birthday present.

Once I started reading it, I could not put the book down . That’s not just because autobiographies are one of my favourite genres, but mostly because I was reading about a young man like no other I have ever known or met!

So who is George Maduro?
Killed in Nazi occupied Holland, he was a Jew, born to rich Curacao parents. He had moved to Netherlands to study law and was studying for his master of law when WW2 broke out. While studying for his bachelors degree, he had been enlisted in the Dutch army, starting out as a young Private, but later commissioning as an Officer in the Cavalry.

He was a man of character and conviction, with such a spirit of excellence and integrity.  He was very impressionable and had a positive influence on every single person he met even on the hardest day (and he had so many of those in his short life) imprisoned more than once, and then sent to a concentration camp, he always acted in integrity and honesty and would refuse to do something if it only benefited himself alone.

Have you ever read about some one and you fall so in love with who they are? That’s how I felt, in the pages of that book. George Maduro’s heroism shines through the pages of his autobiography so brightly. Having won the battle of house Dorrepaal with just a handful of men when they took a house and village under siege that one act of bravery was one of the few victories that Netherlands gained during the war. It was to be short lived though as the young Lietenunt would be arrested soon after by the Gestapo for those same acts of bravery. He was posthumously awarded the medal of Knight 4th-class of the Military Order of William, the highest and oldest military decoration in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

I’ve wished so much that he were still alive and I would meet him and talk to him, that’s how much influence one can have on another. Having read his autobiography, it feels as though I have met him though, his life and actions have spoken to me and moved me in more ways than one! 

Unfortunately, George did not survive the holocaust, and died from a horrible disease called Typhus, which he contracted while in the concentration camp. He was aged 28 and was a fighter till the end, and at the time of his death, deliverance was only eleven weeks and three days away! 

‘George was someone such as one seldom meets. He made a strong and mature impression, masculine through and through. But at the same time, he had something so unbelievably pure in his entire being, in his soul, something almost childlike but in the sense of a wondrous integrity.’ {Excerpt from George Maduro’s autobiography}

This book should be on your reading list, whether you are a reader or not. And a visit to Madurodam is so worth it!

To visit the gorgeous park of Madurodam you can book online here

George’s autobiography can be purchase on Amazon.


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