English translation of Wolfgang Starke on 1.7.15 in front of the house Lange Straße 9

Englische Übersetzung des Beitrags von Wolfgang Starke am 1.7.15 zur Stolpersteinverlegung vor dem Haus Lange Straße 9, Obernkirchen 

Following the commemoration of the Paul Adler family by Wilfried Bartels, please allow me as one of the three grandsons of plumber Albert Bode to address you – also on behalf of my sister Sigrid Speckmann and my brother Heinz Starke.

Albert Bode was born in Obernkirchen in 1891, so he was almost the same age as this house we are staying in front of. As a result of the permanent National Socialistic hatred and their boycott campaign against the Jewish population Paul Adler in 1939 had to agree to a forced sale of his house. The only allowed bidder, the Savings Bank of Obernkirchen, thus was able to acquire the house far below its real value. In the following our grandfather acquired it from the Savings Bank.

Albert Bode lived in this house and opened his plumber shop in it. He then passed it over to his son in law Walter Starke and his wife Wilma née Bode, which both ran a bakery and a café. Today this house whose façade is under heritage protection is owned by our sister.

Our grandfather, a well respected old Obernkirchen craftsman beloved by us grandsons, thus was benefitting from the forced “Aryanisation policy” of the Nazis. He belonged to the millions of profiting followers of the unlawful Nazi regime, which wanted to claim solidarity for its regime by exerting internal exploitation – esp. of Jewish ownership – and external exploitation – esp. of the states conquered by the Nazi regime during World War 2 – for the benefit of the German people comrades (“Volksgenossen”).

We experienced from our parents and grandparents that this house formerly belonged to the Adler family and that they were able to survive their expulsion from Obernkirchen and Germany. It was said that our grandfather acquired the house and that the Adler family received some sort of compensation after World War 2.

But it was not said that the economic well being of our family, its settled (bourgeois) life and our happy childhood in Obernkirchen after World War 2 was based to some extent on the deprivation of the rights, on the exclusion, on the persecution, and extermination of the Jewish citizens of Obernkirchen during the Nazi regime.

We hope that the three stumbling stones for the Paul Adler family as well will contribute that this part of our history will never be forgotten.

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