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Gov. Greitens to visit vandalized Jewish cemetery Wednesday

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Gov. Eric Greitens

ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) – Police are holding a press conference after 180 tombstones were damaged at a Jewish cemetery in University City. They are going door to door, interviewing residents who live in the neighborhoods next to the cemetery. Foot patrols are stepped up in the area including religious institutions.

The investigation into this incident is not complete. They have not yet determined whether this is a hate crime.

Gov. Greitens is expected to arrive at Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery Cemetery Wednesday. He posts to Facebook:

“As many of you know, yesterday Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery in St. Louis was vandalized.

One measure of a community’s strength is what we do in moments like this. We can choose to cower, or we can choose productive action and shared service. We can turn a vile act into a moment for resolve and a demonstration of our state’s faith.

At 3:00 PM on Wednesday, February 22nd, we will be bringing together a group of volunteers to help clean up the cemetery. There are simple things that need to be done—but at times like this, it’s simple things that send a powerful signal about who we are as a state and as a community.

There is a concept in Jewish teaching and thought known as tikkun olam. It translates literally into “repairing the world,” but what it means more broadly is that we all have an obligation to one another and to be of service. It is in moments like this that the world is in most need of repair, and we must do our part.
My team and I will be there tomorrow, and I’d invite you to join us. If you’d like to help, please be there ready to work at 3:00 PM. If you have supplies to spare, please bring what you can of the following: rakes, large garbage cans and garbage bags, work gloves, five-gallon buckets, non-chlorine bleach, and wash rags.

The cemetery is located at 7550 Olive Blvd, University City, MO, 63130. We will be working until the close of the cemetery at 4:00 PM.

There are many of you that cannot join us but who still want to help. The Jewish Federation of St. Louis has put out a call for donations for the restoration and security of the cemetery. Please consider a contribution: https://www.jfedstl.org/emergency-response/.”

Information about this incident has been sent to the FBI. That does not mean they are investigating.