Kingston hosting Czech mates

March 19, 2009

More than 60 people with connections to the one-time 10,000 Jewish population of the Czech city of Ostrava gathered at Kingston Synagogue to share memories and review research by the shul’s Ostrava group.

The group was set up four years ago after a Sefer Torah once used in Ostrava was offered to Kingston on permanent loan by the Czech Memorial Scrolls Trust. In that time, the team has developed links with families originating from the region and has heard remarkable survival stories of Ostrava Jews.

Those at the latest get-together included George Roden and Kurt Berger, who recognised each other from a 1931 school photograph. Also there was Werner Reichenbaum, former German ambassador to Chile. Mr Reichenbaum’s father was deported from Ostrava to Theresienstadt and was later in Auschwitz and Dachau, where he was murdered.

Last updated: 3:53pm, July 27 2009