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Missouri renames road cleaned by neo-Nazis after rabbi

Wednesday, July 1, 2009 | 7:30 p.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD — A Missouri road adopted by a neo-Nazi group under the state's litter cleanup program has been renamed for a rabbi who narrowly escaped Nazi Germany in World War II.

Gov. Jay Nixon on Wednesday signed a bill naming a half-mile stretch of U.S. 160 in Springfield the "Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel Memorial Highway."

But Heschel's daughter says her late father wouldn't have felt honored by the move. Susannah Heschel, a professor of Jewish history at Dartmouth College, also said she's worried future generations will think her father condoned Nazi beliefs.

A leader of the Springfield Unit of the National Socialist Movement said Wednesday that renaming the highway "is silly" and shouldn't have been done.

 


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