Letter to freinds regarding father's passing 6-11-05

2801 Watch Hill Drive

Tarrytown, NY 10591



Saturday, June 11, 2005


Dear Friends,


Thanks for your note. Sunday, May 29th, the day of the funeral, was the culmination of not only a hectic period of stress that went on for three long weeks of anxiety, concern, and worry, but also the termination of 70 long years of marriage for my parents. That’s a long time for any relationship. My parents were not youngsters when they were married and in their day they were well into adulthood and independence.


No one should be surprised by the resilience of my mother as a survivor. Unlike my father who was never really sick a day in his life, was an active athlete up until his 90’s and continued to drive past the age 100, my mother was not athletic, had all sorts of life threatening illnesses and accidents that she overcame. She has an iron will and this has been a strong factor contributing to her longevity. So even though some thought the ordeal of going to the cemetery would be debilitating, and some thought she couldn’t leave her apartment to sit Shiva at our home for hours, she was able to accomplish both with courage and good form. She did not break down, did not indulge in self-pity, and seemed quite happy that we had a religious service for my father. Of course the next few days and weeks will be a test of her well-known incredible survivability. Time, it is said, can heal all wounds, but at age 97, time becomes more and more precious. As we all know, there is no cure to old age.


Therefore, now that that historical housekeeping has been reported, I would like to thank you for your concern and best wishes in this difficult and trying time on behalf of my great wife Linda, my darling children Dana and Jon, my generous sister Kaaren, and her husband Charles and their family. As it was said in the book of Matthew, “Many are called, but few are chosen.” In a sense we are all chosen, at one time or another, to perform what we all understand to be the right “thing.”  My father was lucky to be called for a long, basically happy and healthy life. His life and “luck” are quite unique among our species. To get to one hundred years of age in excellent health and great strength, living in the safety of the United States, the prosperity of Westchester County, and with a long-lived healthy family history is quite unique. Let all of us aspire to that end. As O’Henry once said, almost 100 years ago and in my father’s time, “Life is made up of sobs, sniffles, smiles, with sniffles predominating.”


Again thanks for your support and good wishes from our family,


Richard and Linda