Thursday, March 06, 2014

Children of the Canyon

Tuesday night I had the pleassure of hearing David Kukoff read from his newly published novel Children of the Canyon.  David and Judah were friends since elementary school.  Seated in the audience were Mike W. and another friend of Judah's.    Two weeks ago Kim Cooper, Richard Schave's wife gave a reading of her new work as well.  It is wonderful to see the successes of Judah's friends.

I am sure he is swelling with pride for all of you.  I am filled with gratitude  pleasure and of course longing when I meet up with you and hear from you.  I alsways hear one more Judah story.  This evening I heard the full story of the Del Capri Hotel.   Judah didn't singe his eyebrows lighting the oven to heat a pizza!

I also heard from Dr. Steve Forman, Judah's bone marrow  and stem cell doctor.  I had written to him, and i am taking the liberty to quote from his response.  "I was very happy and very moved to read your note concerning the donation to our program in Judah's memory.  I recall well is words to both of us that should continue to do good work in this world...It was so coincidental that your letter arrived the same week I ran into Tony Koerner (Judah's mentor at Huntington Memorial Hospital).....We talked a lot about Judah.  I still have vivid memories of Judah, especially some of the words that wee said about him at the memoial at Huntington that I attended when they even quoted his application.  So, like you I think of him often, remember him fondly..Judah is likely still looking from my shoulder and he remains a presence in both my professional and personal lie...
Its such a wonderful testimony that Judah was so well liked and is so well remembered.


Please add Judah stories.  If you read the blog and I know that Mike W does, just leave a note.  It encourages me to continue writing. Keep me informed of events in your lives, work, family, hopes and dreams.

Martha 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A Judah Story

The Westport library is a beautiful old mansion with rolling lawns, a clock tower that chimes every half hour.  It was the place that my parents loved.  My father has two paintings hanging on the walls.  Judah also took pleasure in visiting the library.  We donated money for trees to honor my mother's memory, and later a tree to honor Judah's memory.

In talking to a board member about the use the school children made of the library a comment was made that most of the town's children do not have library cards and don't read much.  To remedy this situation we began a program where by each first grader would visit the library receive a book that was theirs to keep and a library card.  The program is entering its third year.  I asked if there was any impact.  The librarian said yes, there were two children who now come frequently and enjoy the library.  The names of the boys are , you won't believe this, Judah and Daniel.  I did not have a chance to meet these boys, but its such a fitting legacy for Judah's name.

Yes, Judah's yarzheit birthday and English anniversary of his passing make August, Sept very rough.  The days are brightened by Judah stories.

 

Monday, August 19, 2013

A Photo of Judah

self portrait 

Sunday, August 04, 2013

Eight Year Yarzheit

Hi everyone,

Today is the Yarzheit, the eight year .Benji and I went to the cemetery.  I visit frequently but mostly I visit Judah in my heart.  Its a daily, no hourly missing.  I just looked at photos of his hospitalizations, and I realized that most of the photos are of you his friends when you came to visit.  Judah loved you all, and when he was to sick to talk on the phone, we would read all your e mails and cards that you sent.  I remember the visits, from across the country, and from Los Angeles,  Your outpouring of love was instrumental in keeping his spirit up.  I know he knew you were there even when he couldn't respond.

Your love also kept us, Alissa , Benji and me going.  I miss you all.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Passover 2013


So many thoughts, so many repeat .  Its fhard to vocalize all lthe emotions one feels about the grief of losing Judah.  Some of the Rabbi's say, just use a niggun a melody, because music can express what words can't.  I wish I could find a niggun to capture Judah, his spirit, and his warmth. 

I still run into people who knew him, and remember him.  People that  were not part of his close circle, which always seemed enormous, but people who knew him thru a brother, or another friend.  He always made an impact.  Eli mentioned that he wants to add to the blog from time to time and it won't allow it.  Its open to all , if you can't see a posting them just e mail to me.

I can tell from the stats that many are still reading the blog.  Its a tribute to Judah.   This year as always we will not his absence of presence and his presence of absence.  The glass for Elija is for Judah and Seymour, and all the others who have passed and who we miss.
May this season be filled with warm and loving memories, and may the telling  be filled with rich stories of all those people as well as the traditional story of Passover.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Hi Everyone

Its Sukkot again, Judah is absent.  Benji and Alissa helped decorate this years Sukkah.I string blue and white lights that Judah used for a lantern that he assembled.  I remember the varieties of Sukkot that we built over the years.  First on the front patio, using the doors as posts, flimsy at best.  Then we graduated to a custom built sukkah of redwood.  Each side was numbered with thumb tacks so we could assemble it again the next year.  However, we need the thumbtacks to hang the decorations so we lost our guides.  Well that one didn't last too long.  The next one was built by Frank G. from work.  Sturdy, handsome, made of wood.  No thumb tacks, just a square that lined up no matter which side went where.  Used this for years, until the termites decided that they enjoyed the sukkah immensely. Next came a pop up tent, with the top removed and poles slung over the top, which supported the palm fronds.  This seems to be the most permanent one.  I just remember lots of people, lots of food, alternating between hot weather, and cold nights. 

I enjoyed having Benji and Alissa with me.  Benji returned to Taipei. As part of the Sukkah rituals we invite guests to visit, usually this refers to the spiritual world, but as we invoked their presence the door bell rang, and lo and be hold a cousin from NYC surprised us with a visit.

Rosh Ha Shana this year was celebrated in Westport .  Alissa , Benji and Andrew my nephew went to the great North Country.  Judah's tree is growing nicely as is my Mother's tree.  The weather was perfect, we went to Lake Placid synagogue and to Plattsburg Synagogue.  Both communities were welcoming and very warm.  Judah loved the area and the house.  There are pictures of him everywhere I look.  I feel connected to him when I go .

Speaking of Trees, Judah's seedling that he made me save, is now a fifteen foot tree on the front patio.  I have it in a pot so I can take it with me where ever I go.   So in many ways he is still here.

May the new year bring you all blessings.


Sunday, July 29, 2012

August 17th Yarzheit

August 17th, 2012 will be the yarzheit for Judah.  Seven years, and I still see him as if he is here.  I hear his voice, with"back at you, Mom" His quick laughter, his blue eyes, sleepy manner.  I use memories of him to fill the void of his passing.  I went to Westport earlier in the summer and the tree planted in his memory on the Library lawn is growing nicely.  The house is filled with photos of him, and now that Grandpa is gone too, many photos of him and the family. 

Books were donated to the fist class kids in memory of my parents and Judah.  I received a lovely set of thank you notes from the children, and lo and behold one of the children is named Judah.  When i go back in the fall, when school is in session I hope to meet this young man.  Its an unusual name for the area!

I especially missed Judah, last week, when Alissa made a special birthday party for me for my 70th.  I tried to imagine what he would look like now.  David and Stacey were there as was Mike L and rina.  It is wonderful to stay in touch with so many of Judah's friends. 

A month ago I met with Cindy C. who worked with Judah at UCLA.  So many wonderful memories.  another friend Amy mentioned she used the  name Judah for her baby when she needed to have a J sound to commemorate her relatives.  another honor for him.

If you have any memories, photos, thoughts please send them.  either here, to to ivorytrust@aol.com.

May Judah's memory always be a blessing to you.