Charles Heller

Praque, Czechoslovakia

Born Ota Karel Heller on January 25, 1936, to a Jewish father (Rudolph) and Catholic mother (Ilona). Following the occupation, the Nazis applied the Nüremberg Laws, under which anyone with three or more Jewish grandparents was a Jew. Ota, the Catholic boy, was a Jew. After his father joined the British Army and all relatives disappeared, his mother hid him on a farm before she was taken to a labor camp. Only he and his parents were alive after the war. In 1948, the Heller family escaped from the Communists. They spent 15 months in DP camps and came to America in May 1949. Dr. Charles Ota Heller became a successful entrepreneur, educator, and author. He narrated his life story in a memoir, Prague: My Long Journey Home. ​