Stockstadt mayor makes the case for Stumbling Stones

  • September 13, 2013
  • No Comments





Here is part of what the mayor, who expected a fight, told the Community Council this week:




Stockstadt am Rhine had a relatively small Jewish community,  composed mainly of Westerfeld, Kahn, and Gutjahr families. The survivors and descendants of the Westerfelds have explicitly expressed interest and agreed to the stumbling blocks. The story of this family is well known, in part because of the granddaughter, Fern Schumer Chapman’s, literary work.


In her book ” Motherland … Beyond the Holocaust, she “tells the story of her and her mother’s a trip to Germany: In October, 1990, Edith Westerfeld Schumer returned to the place where she was born – she visited the city on the Rhine. In 1938, her parents sent Edith Westerfeld, who was only 12, to live with relatives in America. Her parents were murdered by the Nazis.
The places where we want to install the stumbling blocks make it clear that this barbarity also occurred in the middle of our community. Even here in our town on the Rhine, man fell victim to Nazi madness. We should therefore lay stumbling blocks here.

Sorrow and joy are closely tied together in such an installation. Sadness, because it is abhorrent to torture people because of their Jewish origin and kill them. And joy, because here at this point, it is a long time ago, and we want to pay our respect to the victims.

Stumbling blocks are remembrance and reminder of that time. Stumbling blocks are important for the whole family and our community. It is important that in the family and in the community this should not be forgotten, that one remembers each family member ‘s specific features.


A good working memory is a prerequisite for the mastery of the present.
The memory of the victims is also a public responsibility. The almost – forgotten private suffering of our missing neighbors can now be preserved in public, the silence will be broken about the past, the future can be designed jointly.


Our neighbors are gone forever through the pitfalls and the lack of public discussion.Your family name will be called again. In keeping with the Jewish tradition:
“A person is only forgotten if his name is forgotten.”




Leave a Comment