MSU historian helps bring Buchenwald rescue story to film
established a new
On April 11, 1945, Buchenwald concentration camp
Buchenwald boy at MSU who returned this year to
was liberated. Nearly a thousand boys, including
Buchenwald, and he told us only now does he realize
several hundred in block 66, survived.
he is completely free."
66—as far as possible
On April 11, 2010, several of the survivors went back to
The film, to be completed this year, focuses on four of
the camp near Weimar, Germany. Michigan State
the boys who survived Buchenwald and returned to
University historian Kenneth Waltzer is helping tell
visit last year. Among them is Alex Moskovic, the only
their story in a feature-length documentary film,
survivor of an immediate and extended family of 41
Kinderblock 66: Return to Buchenwald.
and the father of the film's executive producer, Steven
Waltzer, a professor of history and the director of
MSU's Jewish Studies Program, is a major source for
Established in 1937, Buchenwald was one of the
the history of rescue and child experience in
largest and most well known German concentration
Buchenwald. The producer and a crew from Bigfoot
camps. In 1944-45, the camp was flooded with a
Productions in New York were on campus in late April
growing number of teenage boys, including many
to film Waltzer for the documentary.
who had lost family members in the Polish ghettos
"I am gratified that a talented group of filmmakers has
joined in seeking to tell the story of child rescue in
and camps or in the Hungarian deportations to
Buchenwald and also to probe the meaning of
In an effort to protect the youths, Buchenwald's
memory among survivors several generations later,"
German Communist-led underground, together with
Waltzer says. "We recently hosted a former
veteran Polish-Jewish prisoners, clandestinely
from the main gate and
the Nazi SS gaze. Block
leaders then strove until
the last days of the war
and beyond to keep the
children from danger.
Waltzer has completed
researching and is
finishing a book
tentatively titled Telling
the Story: The Rescue of Children and Youth at
Buchenwald. He also is preparing a second book
tentatively called Children's Stories: Children in the Nazi
For more information on the documentary film, visit
kinderblock66thefilm.com . 0
Transforming medical education continued
National Institutes of Health—the largest
Miracle pets from across Michigan return
to MSU for celebration
competitive federal stimulus grant that MSU
For Jeanne Esch, who uses a wheelchair, her golden retriever, Tucker, is more than just a pet. The service
received—to further the college's research capacity.
dog is an indispensable part of her life.
The expansion effort was further supported by a
$7.45 million stimulus-funding grant from the
"There's a tremendous need to generate knowledge
So when MSU veterinarians were able to save Tucker after the animal suffered a collapsed lung, it was
about people's health needs," says Mary Mundt,
clearly a miracle for Esch. For the veterinarians and support staff at MSU's Veterinary Teaching Hospital,
dean of the College of Nursing. "Our role is to
which sees 24,000 cases a year, it was just another day at the office.
contribute to that knowledge and translate it into
the care system."
Tucker's tale, along with a host of similar "miracle" stories, was recalled during the College of Veterinary
Medicine's annual Celebration of Life event in April. More than 150 proud pet owners from across the
The expansion will help meet critical needs.
state and region, along with a few dozen of their animal companions,
According to a 2009 study in the journal Health
attended the ceremony, which honored pets that faced overwhelming
Affairs, the nursing shortage in the United States is
projected to grow to 260,000 registered nurses by
2025. To address this shortage, over the last five
Among the honored animals were about 50 dogs, including one that had
years the college has doubled its enrollment and
its heart penetrated by a fallen tree branch; six horses; five cats; and a
added new programs targeting students at the
rabbit named Roo that overcame cancer.
undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels.
"The animals at this event have all gone through amazing journeys," says
Pat LeBlanc, director of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital. "It is a testament
"Part of our mission is to provide new faculty
members who will teach the next generations of
to the specialists, staff, students, local veterinarians, and extremely
nurses," says Mundt. olk
dedicated animal owners."
The hospital, which is part of MSU's College of Veterinary Medicine, has about 90 veterinary faculty,
residents, and interns and offers a multitude of services, from orthopedic surgery to oncology to
Veterinary science courses have been taught at MSU since the institution's founding in 1855. Today, the
college—which was formally established as a four-year degree-granting program in 1910—
encompasses four biomedical science departments; two clinical departments; two service units,
including the Veterinary Teaching Hospital and the Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal
Health; and several research centers. It was ranked ninth in the nation by U.S. News & World Report in its
2012 edition of America's Best Graduate Schools.
Ground was broken in September 2010 for the Bott Building for
Nursing Education and Research, an expansion that will broaden the
College of Nursing's research capabilities and help address the
nation's nursing shortage.
For more information, visit the college website at cvm.msu.edu or the hospital website at
cvm.msu.edu/hospital . 0