Friedel’s Early Life
Beni Baltfried Jaffé, known as Friedel, was born on 21 May 1917 near Hanover. He was the sixth of seven children of Abraham and Eva Jaffé. For six years, Friedel worked in the Berlin headquarters of the German-Jewish firm Adler and Oppenheimer, one of the largest shoe leather tanners in Europe.
By the mid-1930s, life in Germany was becoming increasingly difficult for Jewish families like the Jaffés and, one by one, the family managed to escape. Friedel was the last of the siblings to flee and arrived in England in March 1939, thanks in part to the efforts of the German Jewish Aid Committee. His parents would follow one week later, although the family would never be together again.