Jaime Vandor remembers March 19, 1944, the day the Germans invaded Hungary. He states he was taking a walk with his mother, Anna Vandor, on one of the main streets of Budapest when they ran into his father’s cousin who was then living in the smaller town of Mágocs. This cousin invited Jaime and his brother Enrique to come live with her family in Mágocs, which she considered safer for the Jews than Budapest at the time. Instead, Jaime Vandor explains that the very opposite took place. Most of his extended family members living in Mágocs were rounded up and deported to concentration camps, where they perished.
Jaime Vandor was born on February 26, 1933, in Vienna, Austria. Along with his brother and parents, he fled to Budapest, Hungary, in 1939. During the Holocaust, he lived in one of the Yellow Star Houses and later in a Protected House after his mother was able to obtain Protection Papers from the Spanish Legation in Budapest. The Protection Papers were issued with the help of rescuer Angel Sanz-Briz, the chargé d’affaires (government official) at the Spanish Embassy in Budapest. The process was facilitated by the fact that Jaime’s father was living in Spain at the time. Jaime Vandor was liberated when the Soviet armed forces entered Budapest in January 1945.