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December 18, 2008 - Image 13

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2008-12-18

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Special Report




Of The

Rabbi Charles Rosenzveig's

profound legacy lives on at the

Holocaust Memorial Center.

Esther Allweiss Ingber
Special to the Jewish News


abbi Charles Halevi Rosenzveig,
a diminutive one-man wonder,
realized his improbable dream of
creating a first-class educational museum
in memory of the Six Million. In fact, he
did it twice.
As he would fondly point out, the
Holocaust Memorial Center (HMC), found-
ed in 1984 next to the Jewish Community
Center in West Bloomfield, was the first
freestanding institution of its kind in the
United States.
When the original space became insuf-
ficient — and the JCC and the Jewish
Federation of Metropolitan Detroit could
not accommodate an expansion — HMC
Executive Vice President Rosenzveig and
his supporters built a new museum in
Farmington Hills.
Southfield architect Ken Neumann's
distinctively designed building, featuring
barbed wire and chimneys to evoke the
death camps, opened in 2004 on Orchard
Lake Road, north of 12 Mile on a site where
the Old Orchard movie theater once stood.
At 52,000 square feet, the space is more
than 41/2 times larger than the original
facility. Last year, more than 125,000 people
visited the HMC — 90 percent of them
"I think that groundbreaking was
the rabbi's proudest moment:' said Abe
Weberman of West Bloomfield, who called
the late rabbi "my best friend:'

Rabbi Charles Rosenzveig inside

the Holocaust Memorial Center

he founded.

Left: The eternal flame near the

entrance burns in memory of the

Six Million.

Keeper on page A14

December 18 • 2008


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