13th Avenue Renamed Wallenberg Way


raoul-wallenbergBrooklyn – Councilmen and other dignitaries gathered in Boro Park yesterday to formally rename the Boro Park portion of 13th Avenue after RaoulWallenberg, who saved thousands of lives during the Holocaust.

“Raoul Wallenberg is one of the great heroes, humanitarians and righteous gentiles of World War II,” an official told Matzav.com. “Mr. Wallenberg gave his life to save tens of thousands of Jews. Thanks to Raoul, thousands of my constituents are here today. This is a well-deserved recognition from the next generation of those that Mr. Wallenberg saved.”

Wallenberg, a Swedish diplomat, traveled to Hungary during the summer of 1944 with the intention of saving as many lives from Nazi destruction as possible. By that time, over 400,000 Jews had been deported to concentration camps. About 200,000 remained in the ghettos of Budapest, the city where Wallenberg set to work protecting as many Jewish residents as he could.

Wallenberg rented 32 buildings throughout the city, declaring them extraterritorial under Swedish diplomatic authority. Though the buildings were only suited for about 5,000 inhabitants, Wallenberg quickly issued Swedish passports to over 30,000 Hungarian Jews and moved them into the newly-established diplomatic posts. The passports identified the bearers as Swedish citizens, saving them from deportation to the concentration camps.

Wallenberg recruited over 300 people in Budapest to participate in his humanitarian efforts. While they were well-drilled in the diplomatic maneuvering at the center of Wallenberg’s operation, he would often spur them to more dramatic feats. Hearing one night that Jews were being bound, shot, and set afloat on the Danube, Wallenberg asked members of his staff whether they could swim and led a team into the icy cold water, where they saved over fifty people.

After the war, Wallenberg was detained by the Soviets and is presumed to have died in Soviet captivity. Thousands of the people he saved during the Holocaust immigrated to the United States after the war, and many of them settled in Boro Park. Among those saved are luminaries of the scientific and political community, including the late United States Congressman Tom Lantos.

“Raoul Wallenberg’s selfless actions during the Holocaust have had such an important impact on our lives,” Councilmember Brad Lander told Matzav.com. “If it weren’t for him, many of our friends and neighbors in Boro Park might not be here today. It is therefore vital that we gather as a community and pay tribute to this legendary individual so our future generations will never forget him.”

The co-naming coincided with Wallenberg’s 100th birthday. The Raoul Wallenberg Centennial Celebration Commission, spearheaded by the Friedlander Group, organized the effort to honor Wallenberg’s legacy culminating with an effort to secure the Congressional Gold Medal for Mr. Wallenberg.

{Noam Amdurski-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. WELL THATS NICE but i though they were considering naming 13 ave, MOSHE RABBEINU PATH or RASHI WAY or FIENSTIENS ROAD or YAAKOVS AVE or SHULCHAN ARUCH ROAD or EMETT STREET or YOSEF PATH or RACHEL ROAD or,,OR,,,OR,,, GEE I had not idea this was their intention, I meanits nice and all but personally I would name it either REMEMBRANCE FOR THE GOOD beginings or the future like’ MEIR KAHANE PATH.How about ISAIAH ROAD or….OH WELL I PLANNED TO GO SHOPPING ON WALLENBERG STREET FOR PURIM

  2. By telling our children, who this great person was, we can explain to them, how beautiful it is in the eyes of HKB”H, when you do real Chesed with another Human Being, without looking whether they happen to be born into the same ethnicity or race as you were born.

  3. To number 1 before you sound off like that why don’t you cheak and see maybe you wouldn’t be here or some of your family if not for Walenberg . Haven’t you heard of hakoras tov there are over 250000 Erlich Yidden around today because of him .He deserves it