This is Elfriede Rinkel — on the left, at 86 and on the right, in her twenties when she was a guard at Ravensbrück. At the tail end of the Second World War, from June 1944 to April 1945, she was an acting handler of the viciously trained SS guard dogs at the concentration camp.
Establish in 1939, Ravensbrück was the only concentration camp operated exclusively for female prisoners near Berlin. At the camp female guards armed with attack dogs forced the women inmates to march to their slave labor sites each day, guarded them while they performed manual labor, and then march them back to the camp.
Today Elfriede Rinkel is partially blind, walks with a stick and is enjoying her golden years in a nondescript town in native Germany. However that wasn’t always the case.
In 1959 Rinkel left Germany for the United States where she was admitted as in immigrant on or around September of that year in San Francisco, California. In the 1960s at a German-American Club in San Francisco she met a German Jew, Fred William Rinkel and they married in 1962. Her husband had fled Nazi Germany and escaped the Holocaust but died never knowing of his wife’s past.
In September 2006, Elfriede Rinkel was deported to Germany after being charged with her crimes, though she stresses she was never apart of the Nazi party. Under federal law, all aliens found to have taken part in acts of Nazi-sponsored persecution are required to be deported.
January 27, 2011, 5:30pm / 59