Community Pulls Together For Reconsecration Ceremony

Sunday, August 27th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Tulsa tried to make things right after cemetery vandalism tore at the heart of the community.

Two men, one with white power and swastika tattoos, are in jail for knocking down 93 Jewish headstones early Friday morning.

Those of the Jewish faith say the good that has come out of this, has been the support shown by people of all religious beliefs.

Members of the congregation B'nai Emunah put stones on top of the near 100 headstones.

The stones represent giving comfort to everybody in need and each individual stone is a record of respect of family and friends.

Rabbi Fitzerman says today's service at Rose Hill shows that Tulsans can count on one another in the face of any storm.

Hundreds of people of all religious beliefs attended the Service of Reconsecration during the heat of the afternoon.

Rabbi Fitzerman called the attack on headstones marked with the Star of David or with Hebrew writing, an isolated case.

He says today's turnout shows Tulsa is a community of profound moral health.

And he urged the community to be strong, and step forward, not back.

"None of us should give way to nervous fearfulness or yield one inch of our healthy self-regard. I call on all of us to do exactly this, and join each other in a circle of confidence," says Fitzerman.

Police arrested 20-year-old Jonathan Duke on more than 90 counts of malicious injury to property, harassment because of race, resisting arrest and public intoxication.

18-year-old Dillon Bell was arrested on complaints of malicious injury to property and public intoxication.

Firefighters, who heard the commotion in the cemetery, called police Friday morning.