Victor Bodson

Victor Bodson (24 March 1902 – 29 June 1984) was a Luxembourgish politician and lawyer who held a number of political posts during his career. He is recognised as Righteous Among the Nations award by Yad Vashem for his actions during the Holocaust in occupied Luxembourg, in which he helped Jews escape persecution from the German government.

Victor Bodson
European Commissioner for Transport
In office
1967–1970
PresidentJean Rey
Preceded byLambert Schaus
Succeeded byAlbert Coppé
President of the Chamber of Deputies
In office
1964–1967
Prime MinisterPierre Werner
Preceded byJoseph Bech
Succeeded byRomain Fandel
Personal details
Born24 March 1902
Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
Died29 June 1984 (1984-06-30) (aged 82)
Mondorf-les-Bains, Luxembourg
Political partyLuxembourg Socialist Workers' Party

Life

Bodson was born on 24 March 1902 in Luxembourg City. He practiced as a lawyer in Luxembourg, and was a motorcyclist (Luxembourgish champion in 1926) and swimmer.

His political career started in 1930, when he became a member of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP). In 1934 he was elected into the Chamber of Deputies, and in 1935 he became a member of the council of Luxembourg City. He was an active campaigner for those Luxembourgers who volunteered to fight on the Republican side in the Spanish Civil War; he also campaigned against the Maulkuerfgesetz. On 6 April 1940 he became Minister for Justice, Public Works and Transport. However, like most other government members, he went into exile after the German invasion on 10 May 1940.

After the liberation, he had the same portfolios and, as justice minister, was partially responsible for purification (épuration) in the Liberation Government, and in the National Unity Government (until 1 March 1947). In 1948 and 1951 he was re-elected to the Chamber.

In 1967 he was appointed as Luxembourg's European Commissioner and served on the Rey Commission until 1970. He had responsibility for Transport.

Righteous Among Nations award

Victor Bodson lived close to the river Sauer, which acts as the border between Luxemburg and Germany. Bodson helped create and operate an escape route for Jews during World War II. The route required fleeing Jews to cross over the river before meeting Bodson at his house in Steinheim. Here using a special apparatus in his car, he would ferry these people to a safe haven that had been prepared in advance by his friends.

During the course of his actions, Victor Bodson risked his life several times. Due to the results of his actions approximately 100 Jews were saved from the concentration camps.

Miscellany

The Victor Bodson Bridge in Hesperange, in southern Luxembourg, is named after Bodson. Victor Bodson founded a law firm in Luxembourg in 1923, which is today called Wildgen, Partners in Law

References

  • Victor Bodson – his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  • "The Righteous Among the Nations – Luxemburg" (PDF). Yad Vashem The Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  • Victor Bodson Bridge at Structurae. Retrieved on 28 April 2006.
Political offices
Preceded by
René Blum
Minister for Justice
1st time

1940–1947
Succeeded by
Eugène Schaus
Minister for Public Works
1st time

1940–1947
Succeeded by
Robert Schaffner
Minister for Transport
1st time

1940–1947
Preceded by
Eugène Schaus
Minister for Justice
2nd time

1951–1959
Succeeded by
Pierre Werner
Preceded by
Robert Schaffner
Minister for Public Works
2nd time

1951–1959
Succeeded by
Robert Schaffner
Minister for Transport
2nd time

1951–1959
Succeeded by
Pierre Grégoire
Preceded by
Joseph Bech
President of the Chamber of Deputies
1964–1967
Succeeded by
Romain Fandel
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