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PBS to air film of American couple that defied Nazis

Rev. Waitstill Sharp and his wife, Martha, risked imprisonment and death to help save hundreds of people in WWII Europe

An undated picture of American Unitarian minister Rev. Waitstill Sharp and his wife, Martha. (screen capture: YouTube)
An undated picture of American Unitarian minister Rev. Waitstill Sharp and his wife, Martha. (screen capture: YouTube)

NEW YORK (AP) — PBS will air a film in September about an American couple that spent two years rescuing Jews in Europe before and after the start of World War II, made by the couple’s grandson with documentarian Ken Burns.

The 90-minute film, scheduled to air Sept. 20, tells of Unitarian minister Waitstill Sharp and his wife, Martha. The Wellesley, Massachusetts, couple helped save hundreds of people in 1939 and 1940, risking imprisonment and death if discovered by the Nazis.

Burns called it “one of the most incredible tales of compassion, sacrifice and heroism” he’d heard of, and was unaware of them until the Sharps’ grandson, Artemis Joukowsky, told him. Joukowsky has written a companion book that will be out Sept. 6.

Tom Hanks provides the voice of Waitstill Sharp in the film.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.

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