Anne Frank: The Destiny Of Otto Frank
Amongst the many characters in this book that stand up for something that they believe in, there is one character in particular that stood out to me. That character is Otto Frank [Anne’s father]. Without him, the world would never have known that there was an Anne Frank diary. The novel Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl, is written by a young woman who experienced first hand Nazi persecution-the Halocaust, and eventually the dreaded concentration camps. As Eleanor Roosevelt once said “This is one of the wisest and most moving commentaries on war and its impact on human beings that I have ever read.”
Otto Frank was born and grew up in Frankfurt, Germany. He was a successful businessman, as well as a fighter in the German army in World War I. After the war, he settled down and specialized in banking. When Anne was four years old and her sister Margot seven, he moved the family to Holland following the rise of the Nazis and the harsh laws against the Jews in Germany. When the Nazis invaded Holland it became time for Otto to form a plan to enter a hiding place that he prepared in advance, expecting for something like this to happen.
Before getting ready to go into hiding, Margot had received a letter ordering her to go work at a labor camp. With her father Otto aware of this, he asked his family friends and employees to all help him prepare a hidden place at the back of the building where he had worked. It is there where he and his family along with others slowly moved furniture, bedding, kitchenware and everything else, hoping that they would have all they would need in their new home. Otto wanted to keep his family away from all harm and only told the people closest to him about the “Secret Annexe”.
After moving into the secret hiding place on July 8, 1942, a hidden entrance was created and the “Secret Annexe” became reality. It was for two years that the Franks, the Van Daans, and Albert Dussel lived in hiding. When the Nazis discovered the hiding place, all of the people were taken by train to a holding camp. Although housed separately, Otto Frank was still able to visit with his wife and daughters until they were finally shipped to a concentration camp in Auschwitz. It is here that men and women were separated, and it was the last time Otto got to see his family.
After the war, Otto returned to Holland and reached out to the people that had originally helped him and his family while they were hiding in Amsterdam. It was at this time that he was given all the papers that were found in Anne’s handwriting on the floor of the “Secret Annexe”, the day that they were taken away. It was Otto who had these papers published and they eventually made up the diary of Anne Frank. Without Otto’s perseverance and commitment to life, we may never have seen these stories come to life.