Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Father is Born

This is the 7th Father's Day without my dad and while I miss him every day, Father's Day is particularly hard.  The stores are filled with reminders of that special man in our life and when he's no longer with us, its like a slap in the face.  The few days before that one Sunday in June gets particularly frenzied as people pour through cards trying to find that perfect card for their perfect dad.  But I just walk on by.

While going through the treasures from the storage unit, I ran across my dad's baby book. 

Mr. and Mrs. Sig Levy are the parents of a baby boy, this being the second son.

Gordon Floyd Levy was born February 11, 1927 at  Burnett Sanitarium in Fresno, California.  He weighed 8 pounds, 3 ounces and was 20 inches long and by his first birthday had grown to 22 pounds, 4 ounces.

The baby book is filled with all of his 'firsts' - first tooth on August 31, 1927, crawled for the first time at 7 months, stood by himself two weeks later, and then walked alone at 13 months.  I know what gifts he got for his first Christmas, his first words (mama and dada), and how he spent his first birthday.  But the description of his first outing really had me laughing.

Gordon Floyd Levy received his first outing with an automobile ride on February 27th.  He and his mother came home from the Burnett Sanitarium in an ambulance on February 20th.  His mother was up for the first time on February 22nd.
Boy have things changed in the last 80+ years!  Mother and baby stayed in the hospital for 9 days, came home in an ambulance, and mother didn't get out of bed for 11 days.  Today new mothers are up moments after birth and often times don't even go to a hospital!

It's strange to think of our parents as babies and I'm sure when Dad was born his parents never thought about him one day being a dad, a grandfather, or a great grandfather.  And someday in the future, some budding genealogist will think of him as their 4th great grandfather or 7th great grandfather or some other ancestor who they will get to know through documents, photos, and maybe even this blog.

Here's the first photo of Dad from his baby book.

March 6, 1927
Robert and Gordon Levy
Loraine Gunzendorfer Levy and Bertha Schwartz Gunzendorfer
I've written a lot about Bertha (Birdie) in the past (most recently here) but now here she is as a grandmother. 

This pose cracks me up.  Like we can't see the hands of the person hiding while holding him up.

July 4, 1927

And since it's Father's Day, I just have to include this photo with my dad, his brother, and my grandfather, Sigmund Levy.

Sig looks happy with his two sons

And here's my dad as a 2 year old looking a little mischevious - I sure would love to know what he was planning at that moment.

April 5, 1929

I've sure loved learning more about my dad and his family through all of these photos, books, and other things I've stumbled across.  And it is especially fun to see him as a baby and think about what life was like for him before he was my dad.

Happy Father's Day, Dad!


  1. This is GREAT, Debi! And I know how you feel on Father's Day. But how wonderful that you have these great memories and pieces of his past.

  2. What a lovely tribute to your dad! My dad passed away three years ago and I miss him very much.

    I love the picture of "the hands" holding your dad as a baby! I wonder why they didn't just sit there holding him in their lap. Now we don't know who "the hands" belong to.