Festive Inauguration of Three New Stations of the “Path of Remembrance” in Alsergrund, June 6, 2019
Around 50 people gathered on this radiant summer day for the opening of the 4th part of the Alsergrund commemorative trail.
Alsergrund District Councillor, Susanne Plachy-Loco, opened the ceremony emphasizing the significance of the “Stones of Remembrance” Association for the important reminder they provide. She admonished against forgetting the past, saying that “looking away is no solution” and stressed that the need to come together and help each other has never been of greater importance.
Roswita Hammer then described the background of the “Stones of Remembrance” Association that aims to provide a symbolic return for victims to Vienna. In the words of its founder, Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler: “We don’t only want to commemorate the death of victims, we also want to remember their lives.“
Among those present were relatives of Frances Zamcheck for whom a Stone was place in 2017 at Malzgasse 9 in Vienna’s 2nd District. Visiting from New York, they accompanied the group throughout the day’s ceremonies.
Bengt Sprinzl, who lived at Porzellangasse 33a/15 until the age of 21 explained why he felt the need to create a Stone in honour of Ida and Luise Nussbaum after he had learned, in 2013, that his apartment had been one of many Aryanised; and that these women resident there had been removed from their home and sent to their death at Theresienstadt.
Resident Fabian Patzak commemorated Edith and Oswald Rosenberg. He explained that until 1988 no one knew what had happened in this building. He was relieved that “carpet had been lifted on this tragic reality”.
Here we commemorated Avram and Sophie Rosenbaum’s shop in which candles, soaps and perfumes and business articles were sold. The owners had been forced to flee from one day to the next when their business was Aryanised.
Sophie Bader, the Rosenbaum’s granddaughter, and David Bader, their great-grandson, came from Georgia, USA to place the Stone. David Bader said he still has photographs of him as a three-year-old on the Danube Canal.
The memory of Naftali and Adela Gelles was celebrated at this address.
Louise Crowley from New York described her many years researching what had happened to her family. She explained how her life had changed after she discovered the names of Naftali and Adela Gelles on the Nazi Deportation transport list dated May 1942. Travelling from the USA, Louise Crowley thanked Yuval Gelles, grandson of the Gelles family, for his help that led to this discovery as well as providing a photo of Adela and Naftali.
The Gelles family travelled from Israel to be present at the opening.