History of World War Two Told Through Letters
Today marks what would have been Alex’s 103rd birthday. With the recent passing of my grandma Sophie, I thought it was especially important to acknowledge this day and the legacies that grandparents leave. Soon they will become great grandparents for the fourth time (also, happy birthday to one of his great-grandchildren, Ceci)!
The letters that this blog focuses on often revolve around the hardships of war, financial worries, separation and longing. Despite a few moments of humor and joy, by and large the letters fail to convey the loving and humorous aspects of Alex’s personality. He was a fantastic storyteller. To me, his best stories were the ones that were the most pointless, the least true and the most painfully drawn out. He told one tale about Hungary’s most famous (non-existent) navy machinist. Late in his life he vividly recalled that when he arrived in America he was greeted by hundreds of people singing “For he’s a jolly good fellow.” (This story came out of his more senile state but was great nonetheless.) A huge opera fan, Alex convinced fellow performance goers at the Met that he was a famous Opera singer (not hard to believe considering his stature and Italian accent). The jig was up when he tripped down the stairs while playing the part.
And, a different birthday post in which Alex acknowledges, “Here is once more my birthday. I think my last one was in Boston. At least then I knew that in a few days I would see you. Now its just another day… and the realization that I am not growing younger.“: Thank you all for reading and letting the memory of Alex to infiltrate your lives in whatever small way.