Saturday, February 11, 2017

90 Years Ago

Gordon 2_1977
Gordon Levy, 50th birthday, February 1927
90 years ago today, my dad, Gordon Levy, was born.  90 years!  How in the heck can that even be possible?  But even though the years are swiftly passing, I can’t let him be forgotten.  He’s been on my mind a lot lately as we’ve been converting home movies from VHS from the 1970’s through the early 2000’s and, of course, there are lots of memories of Dad.  Father of the bride (my sister) and, later, grandfather of two brides (my daughters).  Toasts at each of the weddings – what a joy to actually be able to hear him after all these years.  But probably the most memorable to me was the family gathering we had in Napa to celebrate Mom & Dad’s 50th anniversary in 2000.  In true Gordon fashion, he brought notes with him so when he stood up to give us his thoughts, he wouldn’t forget anything.  And while he spoke to the small crowd of 15, he got a little choked up when he shared cherished memories of each of us.  And, of course, I got a little choked up listening to him all these years later.

Several years ago I wrote a bit about Dad’s baby book – what a gift to have that to look back on.  You can read about it HERE.  So today I pulled it out and revisited Dad’s early life.


Interesting birth announcement.  From what I know, the Sciots’ are a Masonic organization and this must have been a newsletter.  I wish I knew the date of this but I’m guessing it wasn’t too long after the birth.

Dad and his brother, Rob, were always close but it’s good to know that bond started when they were young.  Here they are in September, 1927 – Dad was 7 months old and Rob was approaching his 7th birthday.

Gordon_Rob 9_1927

In 1928, Dad celebrated his first birthday.  I love that Uncle Wilt, Grandma’s brother, sent a telegram.  And it seemed like Wilt’s name was butchered quite a bit – he probably got used to being called Will.

Telegram from Wilt 1928

And a cute little card from Uncle Leon, Grandpa’s older brother.  I’m so happy Grandma put the date on it.

Birthday Greetings from Leon 1928

What fun to read about Dad’s first birthday party.

First Birthday Party

And look at that – we know that along with the birthday card Leon sent $5.00, which was close to $70 today.  Grandma and Grandpa would have been Bertha (Schwartz) and Abe Gunzendorfer as both Levy grandparents were gone by 1928.  Hermina and Gilda Levy were Dad’s cousins (Ben Levy’s daughters) as were Herbie and Barbara (Herb Levy’s children).  The only name that doesn’t look familiar is Ruth Ann Winkler.

This picture of Dad is from about 1928.  My brother as a toddler sure looked a lot like him.  And that sure looks like an interesting bike.

Gordon c 1928

Dad is adorable in this little bathing suit and it looks like he’s having fun in the sandbox.

Gordon Sandbox 5_13_1928

Then came his second birthday – thank you again, Grandma, for labeling things for me!

Gordon 2_11_1929

And a few other photos from 1929.

Gordon c 1929

Rock the hat, Dad!

Gordon Hat c 1929

I love to see families together – it gives a good snapshot of a moment in time.  Here’s Dad with his brother, mother, and grandparents, Abe and Bertha (Schwartz) Gunzendorfer.  Nice looking family!

Abe_Bertha_Loraine_Gordon_Rob 6_1930

The years flew by and one birthday ran into the next.  And while I don’t have a picture of his 78th (and last) birthday, I do have a photo from just a few months later.

Gordon Levy c 2005

Happy 90th birthday, Dad!


  1. What a great tribute to your dad, and wonderful photos.

  2. My dad was born just a few months before yours, and it's a real blessing that he is still alive. I wish I had as many photos of him as a boy as you do of your dad. What a cutie!

    1. He definitely was a cutie. And I have SO many more photos of him throughout the years.

  3. So many wonderful pictures and cards - not just memories of your dad growing up but also a look into your grandmother's heart and soul, what was important to her. Having movies too will keep your dad alive for the generations to come who never had a chance to know him. It's so cool - it's also weird to contemplate (in a good way, that is).

    1. Oh I've been giving a lot of thought to my own mortality. None of us are getting out of this alive. :-)