......... it was early morning today and the phone rings, I'm a bit groggy as I answered, it was Ted, Rita's son-in-law. You know those phone calls, the ringer doesn't sound just right, there is a funny feeling and then your heart sinks.
Late Monday night Rita passed away. I've known her for almost 30 yrs, I worked for her husband at his accounting firm and was a guest at their home so many times I can't count. I'd be a regular guest on Wednesday nights for dinner. What a great cook! Her daughters are a little bit older than I (like older sisters), and when I first met the family, the grandchildren were in their teens. Now the grandchildren have their own children, four great grandchildren for Rita. Those little ones were the light of her life. For those of you who know me as "PJ", that was Rita's husband's doing. It seemed that my name was too long! I recieved a great jewish education via osmosis, and for me who loves to learn new things, it was great to learn about their traditions.
She is an amazing individual, great friend to many people, kind and considerate and a wee bit fiesty, her philanthropic endeavors out worked most working individuals. She taught school, and raised millions of dollars in the greater Hartford area. Love the arts and the theatre. Yes it is in the present tense on purpose. I so believe that we need to celebrate her life, for all the joys and the privileges we received by knowing her. Tonight we began to share some of the stories and celebrate her life. On Thursday, in Jewish tradition, we will have the funeral and begin Shiva - more information can be found - click here
I was good to see you last week my dear friend, thank you for adding your color to my life's journey. All of us will miss you!
Special wishes - to Carol and Margie and everyone - Ha-Makom y'nachem et'chem b'toch sha'ar aveilei Tzion v'Yerushalayim.
love ya - your semi-jewish "little PJ"