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The Holocaust Memorial Center in suburban Detroit says it has received a $10 million (â‚¬7.8 million) gift from three brothers, allowing it to pay off most of its $13.5 million (â‚¬10.5 million) debt.
"I'm very ecstatic. I've had sleepless nights thinking about the phenomenal burden of interest payments that are $72,000 (â‚¬56,000) a month alone," center founder Rabbi Charles Rosenzveig told The Detroit News for a Thursday story. "Now we can use that money to concentrate on other areas of the center."
The museum, built in remembrance of the 6 million Jews killed under the Nazis, is being renamed the Zekelman Family Holocaust Memorial Center. The $19 million (â‚¬14.7 million) center opened in 2004.
The gift comes from Alan, Barry and Clayton Zekelman. They own an interest in Atlas Tube, a steel tube manufacturer in Harrow, Ontario, which was sold to the Carlyle Group last year for about $1.5 billion.
The brothers made the gift in memory of their parents, Harry and Wanda Zekelman of Windsor, Ontario, and their father's parents and siblings, who died in the Holocaust.
"Why now? No reason, other than it was needed," Alan Zekelman of Bloomfield Hills told the Detroit Free Press. His brothers live in Windsor, Ontario.
On the Net:
Holocaust Memorial Center: http://holocaustcenter.org