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George and Martin

There was a memorial service in Los Angeles ten days ago for my Uncle George. I saw him last a year ago at his 90th birthday party. I used that occasion to do a shoot for my Precious Objects project and was pleased that he participated. George brought the family crest designed by his father. Both George and my friend Martin (who brought his vintage metronome) were born into upper middle class families in Germany within a month of each other. Both managed to escape The Holocaust. Martin is very much still with us and doing quite well. While their demeanor was very similar and they both stair stepped through multiple countries to get here, their lives were very different. Both had loving and dedicated families George went from being a POW in Canada to Southern California where his optometry practice thrived. He was an early advocate and provider of contact lenses. Needless to say, he was financially successful. Martin was already studying cello when he left Germany and ended his career with the Cleveland Orchestra. Perhaps not as lucrative a vocation as George's but certainly at the top of his profession. Martin and his family did not identify as Jews; George's did. I know in this short piece I have not begun to tell either story but one of the gifts I received in Precious Objects is a glimpse at these small wonders. Good-bye Uncle George.

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