German-American Rabbi Leo Trepp dies

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Leo Trepp, the last rabbi to officiate in Germany during the Nazi era, has died aged 97 in San Francisco, the University of Mainz announced on its website Friday.

"Leo Trepp died on September 2 in San Francisco", said the university in the western German city where Trepp gave conferences every year.

Trepp, who was born in 1913 in Mainz and ordained in 1936, had officiated in a northwest German synagogue during the Nazi era, but was imprisoned in a concentration camp near Berlin.

He was able to flee after help from a British rabbi and later moved to the United States where he lived for the rest of his life.

"His name will remain synonymous with humanity, goodness, tolerance and reconciliation," the president of the University of Mainz Georg Krausch said about Trepp's lifelong dedication to reconciling Jews with Germany.

In 2009, Trepp's life was the subject of a documentary "The Last Rabbi".

© 2010 AFP

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