Nelly was born in 1920 to Alexander and Clara in Vienna, Austria. At age fourteen, she joined Beitar. In 1938, after the Germans arrived, she arranged illegal aliyah under Beitar auspices. In June 1938, Nelly and her brothers left, and they arrived in the Land of Israel in July. Two months later, she joined Beitar and finished her course in 1940.
When IZL split, Nelly followed Yair to Lehi. At first, many senior Lehi commanders abandoned Yair, leaving him with a small group. Nelly concentrated on putting up posters and in maintaining contact between those in charge of the organization, those imprisoned in Mizra, and Yair himself. She also maintained contact between the Central Committee and Seligman, the lawyer who defended the members who had been apprehended by the authorities.
From her apartment on Shimshon Street in Tel Aviv, Lehi would broadcast, including Moshe Savorai as a newsreader.
In May 1942, she was arrested. She would remain in Bethlehem Women’s Prison until July 1946.
Shortly after her release, IZL carried out the King David Hotel Attack, and Nelly was returned from house arrest to detainment in Latrun. She was released after six weeks.
Nelly joined Lehi activities, including taking courses in light arms and Morse code, and she maintained contact with the prisoners. Ten months later, she was arrested again. At first, she was sent back to Bethlehem, but when it was closed, she was moved to Atlit, to be freed only in May 1948. The next month, she enlisted in the IDF just like the other Lehi members, to 8th Brigade’s armored battalion. Later that year, she was discharged.
In 1951, she married Gershon Lengsfelder, and they had a daughter, Shaula.
Gershon passed away in 1976.
Nelly’s parents made aliyah illegally on the ship Atlantic, were apprehended and exiled to Mauritius, where they stayed until the end of the war.