B bábi, Tibor

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Boeselager, Csilla, (Frau von, née Fényes) (Budapest, 7 May 1940 - Arnsberg-Vosswinkel, 23 February 1994) – Philanthropist, charity worker, chemist. With her parents she left Hungary aged 3, fleeing from the advancing Soviet forces early in 1945. They first settled in Austria and Germany, from where they emigrated to Venezuela, where her father found employment. Csilla was sent to the local school run by the Franciscan Sisters, where she quickly learnt Spanish. Soon she also learned English, because the family moved to the USA. She became a student of Vassar College, where she earned a Diploma in Chemistry. First she worked as a research chemist, later changing to the commercial field: worked as production manager for Shell Chemical Co. in New York, where she also found some Hungarian friends. Then she was employed by a cosmetic firm; with this firm she moved back to Europe. She met and married the German baron, dr. Wolfhard von Boeselager in 1973. They lived in a south German village with their two daughters; she started local community work, and became the leader of a youth group. Thus she met the German Maltese charity organization, the Malteser Hilfdienst, where she completed their first-aid course. In 1987 she met Imre Ugron, a Hungarian Hospitaler, then President of the Hospitalers in Germany; from whom she found out that at the time they were organizing a donation of pharmaceuticals and hospital equipment to be sent to Hungary. She joined the organization, soon becoming its most active and leading member. The Baroness went to Hungary, and with the help of a parish priest, Imre (Emeric) Kozma, a good organizer, container-loads of pharmaceuticals and hospital equipment, instruments were transported to Hungary. On a state-secretarial level the Baroness succeeded in obtaining approval from the Hungarian government to establish a Hungarian branch of the Maltese charity service, the Hospitalers that formally started on 4 February 1989 in Budapest. In August 1989 it became their mammoth task to care for the newly arriving East-German refugees in the parish of Father Kozma, where they stayed for months, until finally the Hungarian government made the historic decision to open the western borders, thus starting the demolition of the Berlin Wall and the Iron Curtain, allowing the German refugees to flee to the West. Sub-branches of the Hospitalers were established in a number of country towns in Hungary. In the early 1990s the Baroness became ill with cancer. Toward the end she was working in a wheelchair. – B: 1587, 1031, T: 7456.→Iron Curtain; Knights of Hospitaller, The; Kozma, Imre.

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