I encountered a lost tourist on my way to work this morning, she was looking for Anne Frank House. I mentioned that Miep Gies had died overnight, but added by way of explanation “the woman who saved the diary for Anne Frank’s father”.
Well of course Miep Gies did much more than that, she was part of the network of people supporting the Frank family and all those living in the annex at 263 Prinsengracht for the two years before they were betrayed.
After the family were taken from the Prinsengracht house Miep Gies collected up all the papers from the diary and protected them, her wish was to return the papers to Anne Frank after the war, but it was only Otto Frank, Anne’s father who survived and returned to Amsterdam where he lived with the Gies family for many years. It was to him that Miep returned the papers.
She helped assemble and edit the first diary, and over the years spoke out about the holocaust, she was consistently modest about her own contribution saying that other’s had done as much or more in protecting and supporting Jewish families.
Miep was the last living connection with the Frank family, she will be remembered and honoured in the Netherlands. Rest in Peace.