German man whose Nazi grandpa took over Jewish store apologizes to family

German man whose Nazi grandpa took over Jewish store apologizes to family


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A German man who discovered that his grandfather had forcefully taken over a Jewish family’s store during the Holocaust tracked down their descendants to apologize.

Thomas Edelmann, 49, told CNN he got a marketing call last year from a genealogy website — which eventually led him to the Israeli granddaughter of the original owner.

“I believe that if my family supported the injustice your grandparents experienced, it is our duty to take this into account and take over responsibility at least in getting in touch with you to listen and learn,” Edelmann wrote to the woman.

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In recent years, the father-of-two said he had found Nazi tax records confirming that his paternal grandfather Wilhelm had bought the hardware store in Bad Mergentheim in 1938.

The former owner, Benjamin Heidelberger, had been forced to sell the shop to Wilhelm under the anti-Semitic Nuremberg laws, which largely barred Jews from the German economy and made it legal to confiscate their property.

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