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Bebe Koch

(1923 - 1984)

As a teenager in New York City, Bebe Koch heard vague, yet frequent, rumors of possible Nazi persecutions of Jews throughout war-ravaged Europe. Wanting desperately to somehow contribute toward the defeat of Germany, Bebe enlisted in the WAVES in 1942 at the age of 19. Stationed at the Bureau of Naval Personnel in Washington, D.C., Bebe eventually rose to the position of platoon commander and became a close aide to Rear Admiral Hopewood.

After the war, Bebe and her family settled in Montgomery Country, Maryland where she eventually served as chair of the first human relations and landlord-tenant commission. She died of breast cancer in 1984.

Sources: Courtesy of the Jewish Women's Archives and Jewish War Veterans