The Chevra Kadisha in Oudtshoorn this week discovered the Oudtshoorn Jewish Cemetary to have been vandalised, with a number of gravestones damaged in the process. Family members of those buried in this cemetery are urged to come forward. The Chevra Kadisha is looking for assistance in repairing gravestones.
A spokesperson for the Oudtshoorn Chevra Kadisha, Bernard Herman said this is the first bad incident they’ve really experienced at this cemetary.
“We intend to restore all the affected headstones at this stage, 30+ gravestones have been damaged. We intend on laying them flat, as has been the policy in the last couple of years, but this will be the next project once repairs have been done.
“This will incur major costs. Maintaining the cemetery over the years has been a costly affair with no particular assistance from any party.
“Our recent expenses were incurred working around the southern boundary wall, removing old trees which were damaging graves and recreating the many children’s’ ground mounds, which date back to the flu epidemic.
“We also surrounded the entire boundary wall with hundreds of meters of barbed wire at great expense some time ago, and every inch has been removed and stolen since.
“We are fighting a losing battle in our small and shrinking Jewish community.”
Bernard said people globally are connected to the Oudtshoorn Jewish Cemetery, which must be considered one of the oldest in South Africa.
On 20 August, Bernard was able to make a list available of names on gravestones found face-up. Some were damaged and toppled face-down, and those names are not yet available. Below the list:
- Spain Sam 15-11-1963
- David Zelick 25-07-1962
- Solomon Green. 11-07-1962
- Victor Ashman 25-03-1962
- Esther Finkelstein 3-05-1968
- Max Lewiston 9-10-1961
- Louis Finkelstein 21-06-1960
- Dora Cohen 19-06-1960
- Barnet Rick 9-05-1960
- Morris Lipschitz No date
- Jacob Cohen. 6-05-1959
- Abraham Segall 16-09-1959
- Katz Benjamin 19-06-1965
- Rabie Joseph 9-11-1972
- Rabie Bessie 18-07-1964
- Bliss Ethel 20-08-1972
- Elly Bliss 20-06-1964
- Melmed Fanny Hannah 21-03-1963
- Pasvolsky 10-08-1968
- Braude Vichne 26-1967
- Kaplan Isaac 21-05-1967
- Hill Louis 29-01-1982
- Boerbaitz Leah 26-12-1965
- Jack Pick 16-12-1965
- Malke Rubik 8-08-1946
- Lewin Rebecca 24-08-1965
- Segall Milly 5-04-1996
- Segall Herbert
- Geffen Israel 29-11-1977
- Levenberg Ethel Leah Katz
To get involved or find out more information, contact Bernard Herman on 078 053 6002 or 083 298 4326, or via email to email@example.com . You can also get in touch with the Cape SAJBD office via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, as the board continues to work to support our Country Communities.
Monetary donations of any amount are welcomed and can be paid to the Chevra Kadisha account at First National Bank, Account Number 53233 651 893, Branch Code 21 04 14. SWIFT number is FIRNZAJJ.
Released by Mathilde Myburgh
Cape SAJBD Communications Specialist
This Post Has 5 Comments
Please set up a gofund me or a pay pal account
Dear Kerry, we, unfortunately, don’t have either of those platforms. We do have a SnapScan account (QR code on our home page) if you wish to contribute to this cause. You can use ‘Oudtshoorn’ as a reference. Kind regards, Mathilde
First of all, I am so saddened by this atrocity. We cannot let hatred win. I’m happy to make a Chai donation.
Could you please tell me if any members of the Schonland family are buried here?
Dear Jo-Ann, I cannot answer you directly about the graves at this cemetery, but I’ve forwarded your question to Bernard Herman to answer. You can contact him on email@example.com – Regards, Mathilde
I just read with sadness the desecration of graves at the Oudtshoorn Jewish Cemetery. We will definitely donate.
Please tell me when this Cemetery was dedicated and if and where a previous Cemetery was located.
My Grandfather Mark Morris was a stalwart of the early Oudtshoorn Jewish Community