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September 23, 1977 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1977-09-23

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

THE DETROIT
DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Missouri Federation Official Details
Jewish Losses in Kansas City Flood

NEW YORK (JTA)—The
22.000-member Jewish com-
munity of Kansas City. Mo.
and its agencies generally
escaped any severe damage
from the devastating down-
pour and flash floods that
hit the city last week, but
major damage was suffered
by Jewish-owned enter-
prises in the city's leading
shopping center, an official
of the Kansas City Jewish
Federation and Council
ported.
In a telephone interview,
Sol Koenigsberg, Federation
executive director, told the
Jewish Telegraphic Agency
that none of the Feder-
ation's affiliated agencies
suffered anything that could
be described as extensive
damage.
He reported that Marshall
Kleinstein. his wife. Marga-
ret, and their two children
aged 7 and 2 were killed.
They were swept away in

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the torrential waters cre-
ated by more than 12 inches
of rain in one day. Their
bodies were recovered and
they were buried last week,
he said. He added-that. as of
last Thursday, those four
were the only known Jewish
fatalities in the disaster.
The hardest hit section
was the fashionable Country
Club Plaza shopping area,
containing many of the
city's most fashionable
stores and most exclusive
apartment buildings. Add-
ing to the water damage
was a huge explosion and
fire which destroyed a block
of stores, believed caused
by eruption of a natural gas
line.
Koenigsberg said "major
damage"_ had been suffered
by a number of Jewish-
owned stores in the Plaza,
including jewelry, fabric
and department stores. He
said that while the damage
to the stores was "devas-
tating, - the merchants were
busy cleaning out their
stores and that they had
expressed hopes of being
able to reopen for the
Thanksgiving-Yule shopping
season.
Koenigsberg also reported
that a major apartment
complex, located in the
Plaza shopping area, was
evacuated and that the
evacuees included "several
hundred - Jewish families
who are living temporarily
with relatives and friends.
The apartment buildings
were evacuated because
gasoline in the tanks of
some 300 parked cars in
underground parking facil-
ities, submerged in six feet
of flood water, began to
seep into the water, creat-
ing a hazardous situation.
Koenigsberg said it was
expected it would take sev-
eral days to drain the park-
ing facilities and make the
apartment buildings habit-
able again. He said the Fed-
eration was checking other
housing with major Jewish
residency to find out
whether similar problems
had affected other Jewish
families.
He also said a check of
Kansas City synagogues
indicated that only one—the
1,200 family Orthodox Kehil-
lath Israel—had been dam-
aged and that the damage
had been restricted to the
synagogue's heating and air
conditioning systems.
Koenigsberg said the Fed-
eration convened an emer-
gency meeting last week to
work out a coordinated pro-
gram of readiness to aid
Jewish merchants and indi-
viduals. The meeting was

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attended by nine Federation
affiliate executives. he said.
The Jewish Family and
Children's Service was des-
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to Jewish families. The
Jewish Community Center
has been set up as a central
point for inquiries and
assistance to affected
Kansas City Jews. The flood
disrupted Rosh Hashana
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