This movie recounts the history of a unique building in Westphalia. Its “theft” from its Jewish owners, its use by the Nazis during WWII, its “acquisition” after the war for civic usage, the Heimanns’ attempts to reclaim it and the decision – by one vote – to tear it down are covered. The unique efforts of the Stolpersteine Initiative to preserve Borghorst’s Jewish history using artifacts from the home will be highlighted.
Claude Heimann is the grandson of Albert and Frieda Heimann, the owners of the Villa Heimann. Born in South Africa – the country in which his parents found refuge from the Nazis – Claude and his family emigrated to Canada in 1981. He is the president of Totum Research Inc., a company specializing in providing marketing research involving the media, which he co-founded in 1990. He is also a past president of Temple Har Zion. In March 2018, Claude and his sister travelled to Borghorst to meet the members of the Stolpersteine Initiative. It was during this visit that the film you are about to see was shown for the first time.