You are the owner of this article.

Grace: Every toppled headstone at Jewish cemetery in Omaha represents a life story to be told

  • 4
  • 10 min to read
20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS01

The headstones of Kenneth Freed’s father and uncle, both Jewish immigrants, were among those desecrated at Temple Israel’s cemetery property at 6412 N. 42nd St.

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS04

Kenneth Freed has 10 family members buried in the cemetery owned by Temple Israel. He and his wife plan to be buried there, too.

freedfamilyedit

The Freed family, including Miriam, center, and Schoal, right.

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS12

Kenneth Freed's father and uncle, who immigrated to the U.S. from Russia, are among his relatives buried in the vandalized Jewish cemetery. 

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS08

 The Jewish cemetery on North 42nd Street dates to 1871.

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS02

Some of the gravestones. Temple Israel says it would be irresponsible to call this anti-Semitism. But David Barkey of the national Anti-Defamation League says the vandalism “obviously is perceived as an attack on the Jewish community.”

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS06

The tombstones of Kenneth Freed’s father and uncle were among the more than 85 markers broken or knocked down at the Jewish cemetery on North 42nd Street.

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS07

Eighty-five headstones were knocked down at the Jewish cemetery on North 42nd Street. “Every person buried in our cemetery has made his or her impact on the world in a uniquely profound way," said Rabbi Brian Stoller of Temple Israel. "Everyone buried there has a story.”

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS11

The tombstone of Schoal K. Freed, a Russian immigrant who arrived in Omaha in 1912. The Hebrew inscription says, “May his soul be bound up in the bond of eternal life.”

20191116_new_grace_cemeteryBJS10

The damage at the cemetery owned by Temple Israel is estimated at $40,000.

Sign up for The World-Herald's afternoon updates

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

erin.grace@owh.com, 402-444-1136

Metro columnist

Columnist Erin Grace has covered a variety of beats since she started at The World-Herald in 1998 — from education to City Hall and from the city's western suburbs to its inner-city neighborhoods. Follow her on Twitter @ErinGraceOWH. Phone: 402-444-1136.

Commenting is limited to Omaha World-Herald subscribers. To sign up, click here.

If you're already a subscriber and need to activate your access or log in, click here.

Recommended for you

Load comments

You must be a full digital subscriber to read this article You must be a digital subscriber to view this article.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

all

Breaking News

Huskers Breaking News