Yitzhak Cohen had been a friend of Nikolaou Kostas since the age of 14. On Yom Kippur of 1943, the Germans began to concentrate the Jews in Athens in preparation for deportation to the concentration camps. Nikolaou came to his Jewish friend’s house to ask how he could help him and his family (seven people). He suggested that he hide his friend and his friend’s family in the country, and finally obtained forged non-Jewish identity papers for them.
Kostas arranged for a boat to take the Cohen family from Greece to Turkey. Until a boat could be found, he hid the family in the mountains. Five or six other Jews also joined the on the journey to Turkey. The Cohen family set sail for Izmir. From there, they made their way to Aleppo and then to Palestine. One sister, along with the family’s elderly father, were hidden in Greece with non-Jewish identity documents which Dr. Kostas had obtained.
In addition to the Cohen family, Kostas rescued ten other people.
Sources: Yad Vashem