I often wonder why did people get married during World War 2. Especially when you were Jewish, because you had even more uncertainty about your life then the general population.
But then I look at the 2 people in the picture, and all I see is pure love. That look is the look of a couple destined to be together. Their love conquered the fear of their future. Their love conquered the hate that they experienced on a daily basis.
The couple was Maurits (Mau) Samuel de Jong and Annie Rozet de Jong-Wijnman. The picture was taken on August 23,1942 in The Hague, the Netherlands. It was their wedding picture. I don’t know too much about Jewish weddings , but I do know about one particular wedding ritual,”Bedken”.
I understand that during Bedken, the groom approaches the bride and places a veil over her bride this is to symbolize modesty as well as his commitment to clothe and protect his wife. It also signifies that the love of the groom for his bride is not only for her external but also her inner beauty. The tradition of the groom veiling the bride himself goes back to biblical times .It is to ensure that the groom does not get tricked into marrying someone else.
Not long after the Bombardment of Rotterdam of May 1940 the young teacher Maurits Samuel de Jong moved to Zaltbommel. The rabbi of Zaltbommel had already fled at that time. Mau de Jong then took over the tasks of the rabbi. Even though he was offered places to go into hiding he said he wanted to go where the community went.
I doubt that the newly wed couple went on a honeymoon.
Both Mau and Annie were deported to Sobibor where they were murdered on July 16,1943. Mau was aged 23, Annie was aged 21. They didn’t even get to celebrate their first anniversary.