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June 09, 2011 - Image 30

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2011-06-09

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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

children's block—block

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

Kenneth Waltzer

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
Concentration Camps.

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

medical odds.

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

internal medicine.

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

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