BERLIN, June 20 (UPI) -- Wilhelm Hosenfeld, the German officer depicted in the 2002 movie, "The Pianist," was honored Friday by Yad Vashem in Israel as "Righteous Among the Nations."
Detlev Hosenfeld, 82, Wilhelm Hosenfeld's son, accepted the honor in a ceremony at the Jewish museum in Berlin, Der Spiegel reported. Halina Szpilman, widow of Wladyslaw Szpilman, the Jewish musician who survived with Wilhelm Hosenfeld's help, was also there with her son, Andrej.
"Shortly before he died my father had a notary communicate his wish to see Wilhelm Hosenfeld honored by Yad Vashem," Andrej Szpilman said. "This is a great joy for me today."
Yad Vashem is the official Israeli memorial to Jewish victims of the Holocaust.
Wilhelm Hosenfeld, a devout Catholic who had been a teacher, was wounded in World War I and then drafted in 1939, serving as an officer in charge of culture and sports. He was captured by the Soviet Army and died still a prisoner in 1952 at age 57.
While he was in Warsaw, he saved the lives of several other Poles, both Jews and non-Jews.