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Transcript of interview with Sharon Walker by Barbara Tabach, October 8, 2014






Sharon Walker is a real estate investor, retired stockbroker and former loan officer. She was born on December 8, 1949 in Toledo, Ohio, and moved to Las Vegas with her family in 1963, where they started Walker Furniture, a store which they later sold to the Alterwitz family. Sharon's father, Julius Walker, was also in the casino business, becoming an owner of the El Cortez Hotel and Casino with Jackie Gaughan. Her mother, Anne Walker was a founding member of the first local Hadassah, The Women?s Zionist Organization. Sharon continues the family tradition of being active in Hadassah as well as being a Board Member of Jewish Family Service Agency. In November 2014 she was an honoree of Hadassah Leadership. In this interview, Sharon describes her adolescence in Las Vegas and the differences in culture as compared to her childhood in Toledo, Ohio. She also recalls the Walker Furniture business, her father?s careers, and her uncles Ed ?E? Walker and Lou ?Paddock? Walker.

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Sharon Walker oral history interview, 2014 November 08. OH-02168. [Transcript]. Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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AN INTERVIEW WITH SHARON WALKER An Oral History Conducted by Barbara Tabach Southern Nevada Jewish Heritage Project Oral History Research Center at UNLV University Libraries University of Nevada Las Vegas ii ?Southern Nevada Jewish Community Digital Heritage Project University of Nevada Las Vegas, 2014 Produced by: The Oral History Research Center at UNLV ? University Libraries Director: Claytee D. White Project Manager: Barbara Tabach Transcriber: Kristin Hicks Interviewers: Barbara Tabach, Claytee D. White Editors and Project Assistants: Maggie Lopes, Stefani Evans iii The recorded interview and transcript have been made possible through the generosity of a Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) Grant. The Oral History Research Center enables students and staff to work together with community members to generate this selection of first-person narratives. The participants in this project thank University of Nevada Las Vegas for the support given that allowed an idea the opportunity to flourish. The transcript received minimal editing that includes the elimination of fragments, false starts, and repetitions in order to enhance the reader?s understanding of the material. All measures have been taken to preserve the style and language of the narrator. In several cases photographic sources accompany the individual interviews with permission of the narrator. The following interview is part of a series of interviews conducted under the auspices of the Southern Nevada Jewish Heritage Project. Claytee D. White Director, Oral History Research Center University Libraries University of Nevada Las Vegas iv PREFACE Sharon Walker is a real estate investor, retired stockbroker and former loan officer. She was born on December 8, 1949 in Toledo, Ohio, and moved to Las Vegas with her family in 1963, where they started Walker Furniture, a store which they later sold to the Alterwitz family. Sharon's father, Julius Walker, was also in the casino business, becoming an owner of the El Cortez Hotel and Casino with Jackie Gaughan. Her mother, Anne Walker was a founding member of the first local Hadassah, The Women?s Zionist Organization. Sharon continues the family tradition of being active in Hadassah as well as being a Board Member of Jewish Family Service Agency. In November 2014 she was an honoree of Hadassah Leadership. In this interview, Sharon describes her adolescence in Las Vegas and the differences in culture as compared to her childhood in Toledo, Ohio. She also recalls the Walker Furniture business, her father?s careers, and her uncles Ed ?E? Walker and Lou ?Paddock? Walker. v TABLE OF CONTENTS Interview with Sharon Walker On October 8, 2014 by Barbara Tabach in Las Vegas, Nevada Preface?????????????????????????????????..?..iv Talks about parents? backgrounds and childhoods; her paternal uncles, family dynamics and their lives in Toledo, Ohio. Reflects upon how all the brothers ended up moving to Las Vegas, following her Uncle Lou, who worked with the Binions; father partnering with Jackie Gaughan in ownership of El Cortez Hotel and Casino. Mentions the culture shock of moving to Las Vegas as teenager, but quickly adapting to the unique fun of the city??????????.1-6 Continues talking about family adjusting to life in Las Vegas, initially living at the Diplomat Apartments, with others involved in gaming industry. Talks about the Hadassah organization; its establishment in Las Vegas and her mother?s involvement; the generosity of the Jewish community and fundraising efforts. Mentions own involvement with Hadassah; starting group for younger members, Shoshanim, as well as professional women?s networking group??...7-11 Discusses attending what was the brand-new Valley High School; the divisions within the student body; race riots. Names some of classmates, including Goffsteins, Hams; others that lived at Desert Inn Golf Course. Describes Jewish community as teenager; BBG and AZA; anti-Semitism. Mentions going to Israel with sister, on Hadassah mission?????????12-16 Talks about life after high school; hitchhiking to Woodstock; attending University of Arizona; before returning to Las Vegas and working in gaming. More about father?s involvement with El Cortez; running operations; hotel?s reputation for being rough. Mentions working at Horseshoe as well as other properties at various times, primarily in cashier?s cage; career as stockbroker before returning to Las Vegas; previously limited roles for women in gaming.......................17-21 Considers that changes in Las Vegas over the years, especially with decline of mob influence; the transiency of the population during childhood. Mentions to be honored at Hadassah gala; serving on board of Jewish Family Services and the work that it does locally?????....22-25 Index........................................................................................................................................26-27 vi 1 Today is October 8, 2014. I'm sitting in the library at UNLV in the Oral History Research Center. This is Barbara Tabach and I'm sitting with Sharon Walker. Sharon, your name is spelled traditional Sharon and Walker, right? Correct. One of the interesting parts of this project is to start with sort of the family tree, the roots of it all. What do you know about where your family ancestors came from? My mother's folks were Russian and my father's parents were Polish. My father is first?he's the oldest and he was born in America. He was born in Toledo, one of five children. My mother had three siblings. She was born in New Jersey. It's a sad story. So there's a little more to it than that with my mother and her parents. It was very tragic. But ended up that the three girls were adopted by who we knew as our grandparents in Montreal. So she grew up in Montreal after this tragedy with her parents. They took them all in and they were Depression babies. They were all very poor. My father's grandfather pushed a vegetable cart through the streets in Toledo and didn't know any English. So with five kids, the boys had to fend for themselves, throwing newspapers at probably five, six years old. They were survivors. They got into numbers and that whole thing. My dad and his three brothers all ran together. There were a whole group of them. They always went in a pack. Did he tell you stories about growing up in Toledo? Not so much. But I heard stories. [Laughing] They used to come over to my mom and dad's house, my uncles especially after they retired. And every Saturday morning they'd yell and scream about the past and the truant officer and old Vegas. They just had a ball. They'd sit there for an hour or so and eat my mother's cake. My uncle would...?I'm gaining weight from this; don't buy this next week.? And if she didn't, then, ?Where's that cake?? They were tough guys. They were 2 pretty much Mafioso. What were your uncles' name and your dad's name? My father was Julius Walker. They called him Gedaliah; that was his Hebrew name; in Toledo they called him that. Here they called him Julie or Julius. My other uncle was E. Walker; Ed his name was. They called him E, E. Walker. He was a big bookie. He was a huge bookie. My other uncle was Lou and he went by Paddy or Paddock because there used to have a runner years ago; [Charley] Paddock was a sprinter, an Olympic runner or something. My uncle Lou was always the last one of the pack. He was always the slowest one. So he got the nickname Paddock. And then my uncle George, who owned Walker Furniture, was kind of the outcast. He was the youngest boy. They weren't as close with him as the three others were. Is your father the oldest of all of them? Yes. My dad was like the matriarch. That's why they always came to my house, our house after they all retired and would kibitz and yell and scream. My dad would just sit there. He was very quiet, my father. Interesting. What's the story about how he and everybody got to Las Vegas? So Toledo was like neutral ground between Chicago and Detroit from gambling. There was a lot of illegal gambling there. Steubenville; Toledo; Hot Springs, Arkansas?a lot of the bosses were from one of those areas?Cleveland. I mean when my father married my mother, she was very straight. When they had my brother, it was like, okay, enough of that, because my father had a tire store that was four floors of gambling upstairs. Was that back in? In Toledo, yes. There's a book called Unholy Toledo that has a lot of this documented. I'll have to look that up. That's interesting. 3 They were all very familiar. Like I said, they had to make their own way, so they used to do numbers. Numbers is like the lottery nowadays. During the Depression, people would spend their last dollar trying to make it right and trying to get rich. They never did anything really illegal per se. So that's where it was. When my brother was born, my mother said, ?Enough of that.? So he opened like a Service Merchandise with one of everything on the floor and you send down for whatever you want. He had toys and sporting goods and cooking items, pots and pans, a little of everything, jewelry. But his main thrust was cigarettes, cigars, tobacco and candy. I found out later?I never connected it all?but my uncle Paddock, Lou, and some of his friends, Chalky Red, all these gangster guys, had vending machines in Ohio and around the Midwest, Detroit and all that. It was all cash business, washing machines and vending machines. Later in life I realized, yes, well, my dad was probably supplying the cigarettes and the candy to the vending machines, and so that was his connection. Then my uncles moved out here. My one uncle moved up to?he was involved in CalNeva, which is up at Lake Tahoe. My one uncle, E, was very active up there in the fifties. So one by one they all started moving out here. My uncle Lou moved here and was involved in the Fremont. He was good friends with some pretty big guys, so he couldn't get his gaming license. Like who? Can you mention that? Yes. Moe Dalitz and?Moe is one of his dear friends. A funny story. When he was at the Fremont, Benny Binion was serving time in [Leavenworth]. It was a big prison, one of the old famous prisons. They couldn't get Benny on murder, so they got him on tax evasion. So Benny called my uncle up and said, ?Hey, I need you to sell your points??they used to be called points??in the Fremont.? He called my uncle and said, ?I need you to sell your points in the Fremont and 4 go over and train Jack at the Horseshoe. He doesn't know the business and I need you there.? So that's what he did and he trained Jack Binion in the business. I knew Benny. He used to come around the apartment building when I was a kid where we lived. Dobie Doc, his good friend, drove a white Rolls-Royce named Becky, after Becky Binion, and he had ?Becky? on the license plates. They used to come and visit an oil tycoon there; Hank Williams was his name. He was married to a young showgirl. They had little kids. The Diplomat is still there over on Paradise. Wow, that's fascinating. Then my aunt moved out here. She had two children. She probably came in the early sixties. And my father was very close with his family. He really missed his brothers. He sold his business in Ohio, in Toledo, this like the service merchandise business, and he was retired in his early fifties and he loved to play golf. Golf was his passion and he couldn't play golf in the winter there. And he didn't have any hobbies. Jackie Gaughan bought the El Cortez from the Houssels years ago. So Jackie and my uncle E were very close. My dad told my uncle, ?Look for something for me.? So when Jackie bought the Cortez, my dad bought in with him and they were partners and we moved out here. My mom hated it. She didn't like it at all for years. What year would that have been that you moved here? That was '63. I think I wrote '62 on here. I think it was '63. So '63, okay. How many siblings did you have? So she packed up the family and she's reluctant about moving here, right? Right. Totally. She was very straight. She didn't like the Mafioso. In those days, Vegas was all about Mafioso. But she had already laid down the line with your father prior to that, right? 5 Yes. When my brother was born, she didn't want my part of that and tried to clean him up, which she did. He was quite straight. He wasn't anything really like his brothers. They didn't have kids, so they could continue on. They didn't have to set the examples. There's three children and I'm the youngest; we're all four years apart. My brother was already in college. He went to live with my aunt and uncle in L.A. to go to college out there. And his name? Marv, Marvin. My sister was just going into her senior year of high school. She was totally distraught that she had to leave all of her friends and her boyfriend. I mean, we went to the school with the same kids our whole life in Ohio. I couldn't wait to get out of there, but she was very distraught. She lasted till Christmastime and my parents got tired of hearing her, so they sent her back to graduate in Toledo. What's her name? Karen Walker Gordon. And then I loved it. I came out here and I had a ball. I didn't like Ohio. It was too stagnant for me. I couldn't wait to move. We were very sheltered. It was an all-white school. You had to live within a mile radius of the school to go there even though it was a public school. What school was that? It was called Old Orchard, very lily white. This is back in Ohio? Yes. So when we were moving, I was excited. When I moved out here, it was definitely culture shock. I had never gone to school with black kids. I mean, the desert, the heat. Do you remember the first day you got here? Oh, yes. 6 Your first memories of Las Vegas. I came off the airplane and thought my parents had taken me to Auschwitz. I told you that. It was so hot. The heat was just radiating off the concrete. I just couldn't even imagine living here. But at the Diplomat we spent the whole summer in the swimming pool and there were two other kids in there that I was?the three of us were the Three Musketeers and we just raised hell. [Laughing] We really did. We were spoiled brats. One...her father owned the Riviera, ?Dingy? they called him; Dave Halpern was his name. He owned the Chez Par?e in Chicago prior to that. And she was a change-of-life baby. Debbie was her name, Debbie Halpern. She was younger; she was probably a year or two younger than I. Then another girl, Patty George, her stepfather was a conductor at the Desert Inn, orchestra conductor. We all three went over to the Riviera almost every day, swimming and signing the check, and then coming home and changing, going to the dinner shows. And you're like thirteen. Thirteen, fourteen. We were very blessed. It was crazy. I never wore makeup until I got here. I came here with my Bass Weejun loafers and my knit skirts, and these girls in seventh grade were in high heels and makeup. So they were all grown-up looking, you're saying. Yes, they were a lot. I mean, it was a lot different than Ohio. What shows would you go to? I can't really remember. But they were singers and they were kid-friendly shows. In those days you didn't have the extravaganzas. There were a few. The Folies was always here. The Stardust had the Lido, Lido de Paris. I don't remember what the shows were. But we used to go over to Betty Grable's house. And Liza worked for my uncle in one of 7 his jewelry stores. My uncle had all the jewelry stores in the hotels in those days?the Dunes and the Riv [Riveria] and Stardust; all of them. That's bookie and that was kind of his front. In those days, they subbed out the shops. They would lease them out. I have no idea how that operates today. The jewelry stores, the stores?like they do with the restaurants here now. I just thought of somebody else for you. Ruth Goldfarb is another? Another person to interview. A wealth of information, yes. So I was having a ball. I had a lot of freedom. My mother was pretty much devastated that she was here and she was trying to grasp that and make her own friends. I was the only one left at home because my sister went back to Ohio and then graduated and then went to University of Arizona, as did I. So she was gone, [and] I was the only one left at home. My father was working all the time. He was a hard worker. My mother did a lot of charity work. It was a small Jewish community, very small? What neighborhood did you live in when you first got here? We lived right on Paradise at the Diplomat Apartments. And that was a whole other thing; I felt like I was Eloise living in a hotel because I had never lived in an apartment. We always had our own home, a single-family home in Ohio, on a neighborhood street and tree-lined the whole bit, lily white. Here, I was living in an apartment building with all these people. Oh, we just had a ball. Quite a cast of characters it sounds like. And they were almost all casino owners or pretty wealthy people because this was the nicest apartment building in Vegas. There were very few of them then. 8 What did the apartments themselves look like? They were huge. They're still there. They didn't tear them down. Louis Prima lived in the unit before we moved in; he had just moved out. My mom cooked for a lot of the people in there. The midget?Bobby the Midge, they called him?lived below us. He was a bookie. He was a true midget. In those days, it wasn't improper or whatever, politically incorrect. He was proud of it. I think he still might be alive. He was a Jewish guy and he just loved when my mother cooked for him. What did she cook? What was her specialty? She was a good baker. She used to like to bake mongo bread and pumpkin bread and all that stuff. But most of the people in this apartment building were in gaming, casino owners. So it was fun. Anywhere we went was free. I had other friends...their dad was called Panorama Magazine. It was a free magazine, like a Nifty Nickel. But it was all for the tourists, what was going on in town, and they would give these papers away. A lot of the local businesses would advertise. So whoever advertised, we'd go there for dinner, or we'd go and buy clothes and we'd do a trade out. Petillo, Ralph Petillo was his name. So all my friends, we kind of just ran as we wanted and we were pretty wild. I mean we didn't get in trouble with the law or anything. Was there a curfew? Oh, yes. I got busted for curfew once. What was the curfew, do you remember? I think it was eleven. But we were all at the park one time and everyone lied about their age. I was the oldest out of everybody and they took me in. [Laughing] To ?juvie.? It was funny. My mom had to come and get me. Did she think it was funny? 9 Huh. For curfew, no. Yes, there was a curfew and there wasn't much freedom for kids in those days, really. It sounds like you had a lot of freedom, though. Yes. I mean, they knew who to bother and who not to. The police were very aware of who they should go after and who to leave alone. You started to mention that your mom got involved in charities. What kind of charities did she...? She helped start Hadassah here. There is a school, Helen J. Stewart School for handicap people, adults even. So a lot of people did charity work for that. Jackie and?Jeanie Leonard? Yes. There were a lot of non-Jewish people that were involved in Hadassah. The organizations would overlap because there wasn't any line, really. Everybody was friends with everybody. Tell me?which is what brought us together, was the topic of Hadassah to begin with. Let's talk about Hadassah for a while. What can you tell somebody who doesn't know anything about Hadassah, what its purpose is, how it got started here? It's a women's Zionist organization. It started off as a women's Zionist organization. If you believe in Israel that it should be a sovereign state, you don't have to be Jewish. Fran Cohen, whose husband, Carl Cohen, was an owner of the Sands, they lived right on the property behind the Sands Hotel. They had a beautiful suite back there, apartment. A lot of the hotel owners lived right on site in those days. She and Fran Cohen and?Janie Leonard was her name. Janie was not Jewish. She was married to a Jewish man. I don't think she ever converted, but she was very philanthropic. She was active with the Helen J. Stewart, also. And Janie. I don't remember all. But there was a handful of women that helped start Hadassah here. They were wonderful. The town was very philanthropic. Everyone was very generous in those days. The hotel owners 10 [would] see my mother coming and they'd hold their pockets because they knew she was coming for a donation. Did they just seek direct donations or did they have fundraisers? Yes, they had fundraisers. The hotels were so lenient and they were so behind charities and wonderful about raising money that they would let them put the raffle ticket table in the lobbies of the hotels and hustle the tourists to buy the raffle tickets. They raised a lot of money. They were all onboard. The hotels were individually owned then, so they didn't have a board of directors to deal with, shareholders. They weren't so worried about the bottom line. They spent money to make money in those days. They were very much behind the community. Oh, we used to do fashion shows. Now we target more men than before, but it was mostly about women. And they did fashion shows. We had a thrift store in those days. Where was that located? It was over on Trop and Eastern. It was on the southeast side. There's a grocery store. Yes, it was across the street. My aunt Fran worked there a lot. We used to have fashion shows from there. What's his name? One of the stores. Marshall Rousso, they used to donate a lot of clothes, brand-new and some had a button missing or a snag. So he'd donate all those clothes. Then we got charity. But we used to have the fashion show and I was in the fashion show almost every year, wear these clothes. People would buy them out of the audience and stuff. It was fun. That sounds like fun. Now, Hadassah had two different?were there two different Hadassahs? I'm a little confused about the history. No. Years ago. There's only been one. But years ago, before that, was there an older one? The east side?all the Jews lived on the east side because that's where the synagogue was on Sixth 11 Street, and there was only one synagogue. Going on the west side of the Strip was all the way over there; it was far. They just?what did you ask? Well, there's been two different Hadassah organizational titles or something. Okay. So for years there was only one. And then I started?just recently they did this chapter thing and converted them all into one group. We didn't have any of that. It was such a small town and there were so few people, few Jews that we only had one group. When I got older I started a younger group; Shoshanim it was called. I started that group and then I started a women's professional group, a luncheon group, [for] networking. That was fun. We didn't have a name or anything; it was just Jewish women that came and spoke and we had luncheons over at the Canyon Gate Country Club. That was a good fundraiser. The last one Carolyn Goodman spoke and we raised forty thousand. That was a nice one. Wow. When was that? About how long ago? I moved to Miami. It was in '05, I think. Does that organization still exist? No. I moved away. You were the heartbeat, huh? Yes. I left it and no one carried the torch. It was a very interesting group. It was a lot of fun. There was really no other?it was like every six weeks. Who were some of the other members? Trisha Kane spoke [at] the first one; she kicked it off. Then I had people in the group that wanted to promote their business and marketing. How do you market? Speakers would speak for about a half an hour and the rest was networking and mingling. It was a lot of fun. I used to get like thirty, forty women to come. 12 That's great. Yes, it was great. It really was. Let's kind of go back to your teen years. As you're growing up here and you hit high school age, what was the city like then? And tell me about going to high school. You were sharing some of that earlier with me. Well, it was very new. It was a brand-new school, Valley High School; it was the first year. It was segregation time. Valley and Clark were the exact same schools. There were only about five high schools here then. Actually, I went to K.O. Knudson for junior high for one year and then to Valley. That was my introduction to Las Vegas was junior high. And then Valley started at eighth grade and went to eleventh grade then. So then the next year it started nine through twelve. But we were only in eighth grade when we started there. It was very wild. They had carpet on the floors. The walls moved, like at college; they could make from a study hall to a...with seating. What's that called? Auditorium type and lecture halls and all of that. Music instead of bells and air-conditioning. It was brand-new. It was just wild. And it was a closed campus and there were a lot of different factions. In those days, there were the hippies and the blacks and the whites and the ?soshas? [socials?] and cheerleaders and the football players. But I was very social and I loved just being a part of everyone and everything. It was just interesting for me to go to school with black kids because all I knew as far as segregation was our housekeeper in Toledo and our ironing lady and they were like family. I loved them. So it was just that in itself, learning that culture. But I made a lot of black friends. And then we had race riots. It was very bad. Tell me about those. It was during Watts and segregation in the sixties. Most of them were girls. I was in the cafeteria 13 and I watched it all happen. Some white kid threw a raw egg over to the black side of the cafeteria and naturally hit the biggest guy. Yes, by all odds. And the guy came over and this little white boy was eating his lunch and didn't have a clue what was going on, a little four-eyed guy, a geeky kid. He just grabbed him by the throat. Then chairs started flying and all hell broke loose. But most of it was girls. They were mostly girls and they would rat their hair up; put razor blades in their hair and you'd go to pull their hair. But I never fought in my life and I had a lot of black friends. So I told them all, ?Hey, keep me safe and just make sure I don't get jumped.? Because they were jumping people in the hallways and stuff. I was very frightened. I don't like violence at all. One day I came into school and we have a ramp up to the cafeteria and there was a trail of blood down the ramp, and I said, ?No, I'm not going.? And I turned around and left. But some kid got stabbed. There were other things in town. I mean they tried to bus in blacks from L.A. and Ralph Lamb was in office then. Oh, no, there'll be none of that. Between him and Benny Binion, they turned those buses around, and the highway patrol. They basically closed off the Westside and they ended up burning down their own. Benny wouldn't let them anywhere near Fremont Street. It was a very hard time and a very unnerving time. I still have some of those friends to this day. They didn't come to the reunion; I thought it was very odd, with our forty-fifth reunion. There was one Asian girl that came and that was it. And even she commented that there's no Mexicans, there's no blacks. No one came. All lily white there, too. That's interesting, isn't it, that even after all these years...? I don't know. But I got together with a couple of my black friends about three years ago. The one 14 girl has dementia. I don't even know if she's still alive. I tried to call her and no one answered. But going to school here was a lot of fun. I never ditched school because I was a social butterfly and I loved going to school. A lot of kids ditched school and hid up at the Landmark because it was never finished, and so they used to ditch school and go up there. You mentioned some of the families that went to Valley High School that you were friends with. Right. The Hams. Well, they left earlier. I went more in junior high with her. But, yes, all the kids from the Desert Inn Golf Course. The Desert Inn used to have custom homes all around it. We lived across the street in the Diplomat because the Desert Inn faced Sands Avenue; it was three-sided; it faced Sands Avenue, Paradise and Desert Inn. It was that whole...a lot of beautiful homes. And I had a lot of friends. I used to go swimming at their house every day and stuff. But the Goffsteins, they built the Four Queens, her dad. That was a blended family; so she had a daughter, he had a daughter, and then they had twins together. So that's how they got the Four Queens. The Goffsteins and the Hams, Artemus Ham. I used to go with Jeanie Ham over to her grandparents' house, who was Artemus Senior and that the hall is named after. Betty Grable lived on the Desert Inn Golf Course, Harry James. And Keely Smith, she had a lava rock house. The whole outside was lava rock and then an orange tile roof made like a pagoda. So it was like an Asian pagoda house. It was unbelievable. It was crazy. Yale Cohen lived on the Desert Inn Golf Course, Alan and Toby Cohen. He was big at the Stardust; he was a big owner at the Stardust. The Hills, he was an owner, Jimmy Hill and Charlotte Hill. They have a school named after her here. They were great people. He owned the Fremont for many years. Oh, who else? Talk a little bit about the Jewish community here from what you recall of that as you grew up. 15 Well, like I say, there weren't that many Jews. We only had one synagogue. I came from Toledo. We had a beautiful Jewish center. After Sunday school a bus would pick us up and take us over there. It had a great indoor swimming pool. It was part of our Sunday and it was part of our life. All sorts of recreational things to do in there besides swim. All my friends would go down there after Sunday school in Ohio. Here, there wasn't anything of that sort. They had what was called the Ruby Kolod Center. Ruby Kolod was an owner at the Desert Inn years ago. He put this little?basically it was a little shack. It was just one building. They had a Ping-Pong table in there; that was about it. So it was a place, though, where the kids were supposed to go and hang out? Yes, it was behind the temple; it was behind the synagogue. So that's where we had our BBG. I was in BBG with Shelley Berkley. She was a dear friend. And Laurie Shapiro from Al Phillips The Cleaner. There was a handful of us. And the boys were AZA and the BBG and that's where we had our meetings. What does BBG and AZA stand for? I don't know. B'nai B'rith girls and I don't know what AZA is. The young groups. So I always was involved in Judaism, but there was a lot of anti-Semitism here. The Mormon community was not open to us. Talk about that. How did you feel that or how was that expressed? I very seldom expressed that I was Jewish in high school. It was just you could feel it. It wasn't really said and it wasn't really blatant, but you could feel it. The whole town was run by Mormons. So it was pretty obvious. It was kind of special when I was at the temple and when I did hang around with my Jewish friends because I really didn't have that many. Then we had a rabbi, Rabbi Golden. And they used to have a lot of rabbis; rabbis would 16 not stick around very long. There was one rabbi, Rabbi Golden, and he had I think five girls, four or five daughters. I was close with them and they had a house right behind the synagogue. They supplied the house for them. We used to go over there to their house a lot. It wasn't a great Jewish community, but we still stuck together and everyone knew each other. Once a year at least you'd get together and see all the other Jews at the temple. [Laughing] For the holy days. For the high holy days. And everybody had their Sunday best. What's she wearing? It was quite a fashion show. And now we have, I've heard, thirty. Too many. Thirty synagogues or temples or places of? Chabads. Yes, places to go. Yes, too many. My father was quite religious; my mother not so much. I'm not really so much. I mean I believe, but I'm more charity and Zionist. I went to Israel?it was wonderful?with Hadassah. Oh, really? So that was from the Hadassah group here that went over to Israel together? It was a mission. I went with my sister. It was wine and spa mission. Ah, I like that. My mom