96-year-old Holocaust survivor closes his beloved West Ridge barber shop
WEST RIDGE — After 60 years serving Chicago’s North Side, Ben “The Barber” Scheinkopf’s California Avenue barber shop has closed.
A sign on the door signed by “Benny the Barber,” a 96-year-old Holocaust survivor who cut hair at the Auschwitz and Mauthausen concentration camps and for American soldiers in Germany before coming to the U.S., thanked customers and “neighborhood friends” for their decades of patronage.
“Due to recent major health challenges, I can no longer continue business as I have done for over 60 years in the location of Touhy and California,” Scheinkopf wrote. “As you can imagine, just getting to the shop and the general physical nature of my work makes it too challenging, even for a youthful person of almost 97 years of age!
“I have been fortunate to have had a marvelous, long career giving hair cuts to generations of customers who have become my friends. I have also made many friends with people in the neighborhood who have always waved hello, stopped in just to say hi, or to check on my well-being. I would like to say a heartfelt thank-you to everyone for your concern and best wishes for my continued health.”
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