Ceremonial Opening of 9 New Stations in Leopoldstadt on September 15, 2019.
The ceremony was launched with a musical performance by the ensemble ‘Avanim’ (Daliah Hindler vocals, Karin Waniek vocals, Christoph Kögler accordion, Agnes Riha violin) with the “Lied des Bundes”.
Roswitha Hammer from the “Stones of Remembrance” Association warmly welcomed everyone before introducing District Head Uschi Lichtenegger, who has been an exceptionally avid supporter of the Association for years. Ms Lichtenegger emphasized that more than two thirds of all deported Jews from Vienna had had their last place of residence in Leopoldstadt. “It leaves me stunned, what our district lost forever in a just a few terrible years.” She said “Being aware of these atrocious events is the most effective way to prevent them from repeating themselves.” She said that, in recognition of the importance of the Association’s work, there is an initiative by the Green and the SPÖ parties to give a park located at Elderschplatz the name of Elisabeth Ben David-Hindler (founder of the “Stones of Remembrance” Association).
Roswitha Hammer then explained the importance of remembering the people who lived and worked here. “With the Stones, these people are returned to their homes… It is a commemoration of people for people.”
We then began our tour of the individual stations where Stones will be laid.
Unfortunately the initiator of this Stone, Nikolaj Pahl, died in April 2019.
However, sponsorship was taken over by Mr Alfred Mayr. Thanks to his support, the memory of people who had lived in this building was ensured.
Sebastian Kneippgasse 1
Anneliese Steiner from Vienna and her two sons, Matthias and Sebastian, and Monika Celebi from England with her children, Sulia and Robin, were in attendance to honour their uncle/great uncle.
Matthias Beier and Monika Celebi talked about the life of Eugen. Unfortunately, little is known about him as their father and grandfather Wilhelm (Jennö’s brother) rarely spoke about him. It was too painful for him.
The family sang a song and spoke the Kaddish.
Here, Katharina Weiss was remembered by her great-nephew, Dominique Dubios from England.
The “Stones of Remembrance” Association also provided Stones in memory of Franz Massarek and Hans Einhorn at this address.
Schulem and Sidonie Roth were commemorated at this address by their grandchildren: Siddy Rosenberg (USA), Sandy Leonhard (Netherlands), and Miriam Met.
Valerie Ohrenstein was also commemorated with sponsorship from Ms Monika Muhr.
Peter Sichrovsky and his family – Colleen, Axel, Lola and Mara Sichrovsky were attendance to honour Peter’s aunt Agnes and grandmother Ernestine.
A Stone for Irma Meisel was also initiated by the “Stones of Remembrance” Association.
To help cope with the emotional stress, the Celebi and Steiner families (from England and Austria) offered everyone for a drink of vodka and liquor after this opening, which was gladly received by all, after which we had a break for lunch before continuing.
This Stone was initiated by their grandson, (great) nephew and cousin: Wolfgang Gerold, and his family. Fourteen family members from Vienna, Israel, Munich, Bologna and Vienna attended to honour the dignity of their relatives.
Here we remembered Melanie Goldberger, Helene Fein, Gabriele and Richard Politzer, and Erich and Liesl Bortslieber.
Wolfgang Gerold, Izhak Schnell with his wife Gila and daughter Yael from Israel, were once again the initiators of this station.