Irena Sendler, a Polish woman who saved 2,500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto during the Nazi occupation in World War II, died Monday morning in a Warsaw hospital at the age of 98, her daughter Janina Zgrzembska confirmed.
Sendler had worked with Warsaw's poor Jewish families prior to the war. After Nazi Germany's invasion of Poland in 1939, she took grave risks to help Polish Jews trapped by the Nazis in the Warsaw Ghetto.
At the end of 1942, Sendler joined the Zegota anti-Nazi resistance movement of Poles helping Jews. It was then that she began the extremely difficult task of smuggling Jewish infants and children out of the ghetto and escaping an almost-certain death.
Her team of some 20 people saved 2,500 children between October 1940 and April 1943, when the Nazis burned the ghetto, shooting the residents or sending them to death camps.
Sendler was later honored by Israel's Yad Vashem remembrance authority for her heroism.
AP and AFP contributed to the report