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Transcript of interview with Jackie Boiman by Barbara Tabach, March 27, 2015






Jackie, n?e Brooks, Boiman was born in Brooklyn and raised in Levittown, New York. Although Jackie recalls her family?s Jewish observance as far less than strict, her religious connection began in the Levittown Jewish Center Sunday School and under the close relationship she had with her grandmother, who kept kosher and inspired her to do so. In her early twenties, Jackie worked in data reduction at Grumman Aerospace Corporation and the space program; was married and had her only child, Andee. After twelve years of marriage, Jackie divorced and relocated to Las Vegas, where her parents had moved earlier. In Las Vegas, job opportunities for a single mother were scant. Then after months of searching, she found her first job as a part time secretary for Temple Beth Sholom. Over the course of the next nearly fifteen years, Jackie would go on to work with almost every congregation and temple in Las Vegas, developing their youth programs and contributing to the growth of each one for 15 years. After a brief retirement, she had gone back to work as the first administration person for Touro University. In this interview, Jackie discusses at length her involvement with each of the temples, her experiences with being a single mother and living below the poverty line. She shares how her life has been changed through trials and tribulations but how her faithfulness and commitment to her mission had led her to the success she has today.

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Jackie Boiman oral history interview, 2015 March 27. OH-02291. [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 JACKIE BOIMAN 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 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, Amanda Hammar 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 Jackie, n?e Brooks, Boiman was born in Brooklyn and raised in Levittown, New York. Although Jackie recalls her family?s Jewish observance as far less than strict, her religious connection began in the Levittown Jewish Center Sunday School and under the close relationship she had with her grandmother, who kept kosher and inspired her to do so. In her early twenties, Jackie worked in data reduction at Grumman Aerospace Corporation and the space program; was married and had her only child, Andee. After twelve years of marriage, Jackie divorced and relocated to Las Vegas, where her parents had moved earlier. In Las Vegas, job opportunities for a single mother were scant. Then after months of searching, she found her first job as a part time secretary for Temple Beth Sholom. Over the course of the next nearly fifteen years, Jackie would go on to work with almost every congregation and temple in Las Vegas, developing their youth programs and contributing to the growth of each one for 15 years. After a brief retirement, she had gone back to work as the first administration person for Touro University In this interview, Jackie discusses at length her involvement with each of the temples, her experiences with being a single mother and living below the poverty line. She shares how her life has been changed through trials and tribulations but how her faithfulness and commitment to her mission had led her to the success she has today. v TABLE OF CONTENTS Interview with Jackie Boiman March 27, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada Conducted by Barbara Tabach Preface??????????????????????????????????..iv Jackie spends time reminiscing about the genealogy of her family, starting with her great, great grandmother and father on her mother?s side; Speaks about her understanding of the Holocaust. Shares her Hebrew name; her family name was changed and given to them at Ellis Island. Tells of her parent?s courtship in New York City in the 1940?s; family?s move to Levittown in the late 40?s and growing up there; introduction to Judaism in Jewish Sunday School; marrying her husband; keeping kosher in her grandmother?s home; beginning her love for Judaism; special memories of her grandparents in Brooklyn??????????????????????...???.1-5 Talks about her marriage of twelve years and the birth of her daughter; her husband leaving and being a single mother; going from sitting in the back of the Shul to progressing to the front; going to services on Friday and Saturday at first for the free meals, then coming to enjoy the services; campaigning and raising money so her daughter could go to Hebrew School; her move to Las Vegas; her parents retirement and original move to Las Vegas; parents living in Vegas Towers; memories of working at the Grumman Aircraft Corp???????????.?????.5-9 Tells about working on flight test data reduction; working with the Apollo space program, and President Richard Nixon; move to Las Vegas in August of 1985; job hunting difficulties. Joined Temple Beth Sholom and worked as Rabbi Lederman?s secretary part-time; working with Elaine Steinberg at Prestige Travel; getting a fulltime job in 1987; going to parenting classes at the Jewish Family Service Agency; working with Ira Goldberg in Temple Beth Sholom and becoming the youth director from 1989 to 1995; running youth camps; smallness of the Las Vegas Jewish community; her second marriage and honeymoon in Mexico??.???????????9-17 Jackie talks about transitioning her daughter to public school; operating a bus for all the kids to go to Hebrew School; taking her daughter to school in the early 90?s; her daughter?s bat mitzvah; being raised in Las Vegas and going to college; story of paying the Hillel to call her and invite her to Shabbat dinner; keeping a kosher home since 1985?????????..???...??17-23 vi Shares differences of practicing Judaism in Las Vegas over the East coast; driving to California to get her meats for Passover. Discusses the growing Jewish community in Las Vegas; kosher businesses; leaving Temple Beth Sholom; Mel Hecht; anti-Semitism in Las Vegas, Imperial Palace and skinheads during 1991. Story of feeling unsafe as a Jew in her neighborhood; her office being converted into a shelter; story of a mechitza and working with Shaarei Tefilla synagogue; creating an eruv ritual enclosure, with help of Oscar Goodman??????????????....23-34 Jackie reminisces about her parents passing away; Midbar Kodesh Temple in 1996; many options to worship in Las Vegas now; meeting Rabbi Felipe Goodman; her move from one synagogue to another; feeling comfortable with Orthodox. Thoughts on education and youth programs; her position at Touro University and being the resident Jewish Consultant; thoughts regarding technicalities of being Jewish???????????????????????.......34-49 Appendix??????????????????????????????????50 vii Today is March 27th, 2015. I am sitting with Jackie Boiman in her lovely home here. We're going to talk about things for the Jewish Heritage project. Jackie, I want to start with what you know about the genealogy of your family, your Jewish heritage. I can go only as far back as my great-grandmother and grandfather on my mother's side. I don't know my great-grandparents on my father's side. I am one of the fortunate ones that never had any casualties in the Holocaust. I understand the Holocaust. I feel for the Holocaust. It hurts when I hear and read about it. But it's not part of my life. I wasn't affected by it. So the empathy that I have is on a different level, obviously, than people that did lose loved ones. I was fortunate enough with my great-grandparents on my mother's side. They came out of Poland and they went somewhere in Europe; I'm not quite sure. I was named after my great-grandfather. His name is Yaakov, Jacob. So they named me Jackie. My Hebrew name is Yehudit Bracha ? Avrum-Avrum Ben Schmuel, which means Jackie Beth, daughter of Allan Abraham, son of Samuel. That's how far back I can go. Wow, that's great. My mom's Hebrew name is Shayna Malka. I named my daughter after my mother's mother. They told me her name was Anna Bedanna. And yet, when I came here to Vegas and I said it to one of the rabbis, he kind of like snickered a little bit and said, ?That's not really a Jewish name.? They all spoke Yiddish and I don't speak Yiddish. So I said, ?Well, maybe I misunderstood it growing up.? So I named my daughter Channah Bayla after my grandmother. My grandparents, my mother's parents...her father was born in Ayr, right outside of Glasgow, Scotland, and her mother was born in Nice [France]. My father's side of the family came from England, both of them. They both emigrated here from England. I found out his name was not Brooks; that was the name that was given to 2 him at Ellis Island. Are you ready for this one? Our name was Kravelavitz. Oh, my. How do you spell that? I have absolutely no idea?K-R-A-V-E-L-A-V-I-T-Z, Kravelavitz. So when they came?they probably said the same thing at Ellis Island, like you said. ?Oh, no, you're not Kravelavitz; you're going to be Brooks.? [Laughing] And so they came over with the name Brooks; so hence that. Then on my mother's side of the family, I do remember that they were not very religious. The funniest story that I guess I heard was that they invited the rabbi once for dinner in their apartment in Brooklyn. And my grandmother made sure everything was fine and she went to Ebinger's, which was the bakery to go to in Brooklyn, and got a challah. When it was on the table and it was covered, because everybody told her what she needed to do, and the rabbi got up to say the berakhah over the bread and he opened it up, my grandmother had it sliced. I mean it was no ?shunder? or anything, but it was just a little bit was different because she didn't know. On my father's side, they were cantors. So I'm a Levi. I don't know what my mother's side of the family was, if they were a Kohen or a Levi or an Israelite; I don't know. But I do know that I'm a Levi. So I do get to get (aliyahs) because not many people are. Most people are Israelites. So they all immigrated to New York. Obviously, my parents met in New York and they did get married. The funny thing was that my father worked for a company called Sweet Undie, which they made women's underwear, and my mother worked for Brooks Brothers, which made men's pants. So everybody used to laugh when they met; my mother was into men's pants and my father was into women's underwear. They never said that in public because in those days 3 you didn't talk like that. So they got married on November 11th, 1944, right after the war, and they moved to an apartment in Brooklyn. I was born on July 21st, 1946, right after the war. My mom was twenty-two when she got married and my dad was twenty-four. My dad was a marine. Then in 1949, three years later, they moved to Levittown, which was the big place to move. Everybody wanted to come to Levittown, leave the city and come out to the country. This was the story that they told me because I was only three years old; I don't remember them. They told me that when they bought the house, you went into Levitt's office in Long Island in Levittown and there was a huge mural of all the houses, the little squares and the streets and everything. And you could go in and pick out which (one of the little houses) house you wanted. The houses were $8,000 and all you had to do was put a dollar down and they mortgaged $7,999. So my mother looked at the map and two blocks over it said, ?Aviation Country Club.? She thought, wow, that's going to be really cool; nice important people. It turned out to be an airport for I think for the army, or an air force airport; I'm not too sure. Anyway, they bought the house and we lived on Woodpecker Lane. All the streets were named after birds. There was Tanager Lane, Kingfisher Road and every bird you could think of. There also was a flower section, but we lived in the bird section. I spent all my life in Levittown. When I was six years old, my parents sent me to Levittown Jewish Center Sunday School. That was my introduction to Judaism. That was my first educational experience. They put me in there in September, obviously when New Year starts in the Jewish religion. Come December they got a bill for another year for the secular year and my parents couldn't afford it, so they took me out. That was the only [Jewish] education I had. When I reached high school I became friendly with a lot of Jewish people and their 4 parents would get tickets for me to go to services with them. So as teenagers we would all go together. Then I got married by a rabbi in Westbury, Long Island, at the Fontainebleau. The gentleman that I married was also Jewish, but we didn't practice Judaism. We stayed home for the Jewish holidays because that's what they did. We didn't do anything. In those days schools weren't closed. You had to take time off and you had to take time off from work. In Brooklyn in the forties and fifties, the men would go to racetrack on Rosh Hashanah and the women would stay home and cook the Shabbat dinner or the holiday dinner that was coming up or the Seders. So that's what you did. I do remember at my grandma's house, she kept kosher. My father's mother, Agnes, she kept kosher. So at any given time you would go in her house and you would find spoons buried in all of her plants. When they became treif, to get them back to kosher state, either meat or dairy, they would stick them in the dirt for thirty days. Oh, I didn't know you can do that. Well, I never asked around if you could do that. Boil them, wait twenty-four hours, boil it again. But in those days they didn't have dishwashers. In those days they didn't have conveniences that we have today. So it sounded?well, that's what they told me. It sounded plausible that if you made a boo-boo, in the dirt it went. So like I said, my father's parents were religious and that was very interesting. We used to visit my grandparents (my dad?s parents) in Brooklyn and that's really where I got the love for my Judaism was from them because they were more observant than my mom's parents. And they didn't have much money. My grandfather worked in the fish market. One of the two markets on the docks in Brooklyn. My grandma would go to her deli man and say, ?My 5 granddaughter is coming. Could you do me a favor?? She said, ?You know when people come in to buy lox and they scrape off the skins?? Today we buy them in packages, but they used to scrape it off the skin in the delis. He would save her the skin and it would have little teeny pieces left on it and that's what I used to have every weekend and I loved it. I'd go to my grandma's house with my fork and I would scrape it off like this and I would put it on the bagel with the cream cheese and it was a luxury because they couldn't afford it. So those are like little memories that I have. That is so special, yes. My daughter doesn't have any of those type memories. Okay, so in my teenage years?I still wasn't religious. I didn't belong to a synagogue. I did not really observe holidays. I went to a couple of services, but not on holidays because you had to buy the tickets. During the year you could go to any Shabbat service you want, but come Jewish holidays that's where they make their money. So I never really went. Then I got married. I was married twelve years. We had my daughter after seven and a half years of being married. Then when she was eighteen months, my husband left. We were left alone and I didn't know what I was going to do. So I had met a woman who was very nice and she used to go to services. She had children that were getting ready to make their bar and bat mitzvot. [It was mandatory that] she would have to go to services. So I said, ?Oh, I can go along with you.? Oh, I have to premise it by saying, this is when I was still in New York. I hadn?t moved here yet. I had been on welfare because when my husband left he took everything, the money, you name it, even the car. Yes, it would be a difficult... 6 It was a nasty divorce because there was a lot of money involved. So I couldn't afford much of anything. So I said to my friends Linda, Andee and I will go with you on Friday nights to Shabbat services.? And we did. When we first started going, we would sit in the back of the shul because I felt out of place. I would see all these middle-class people coming in dressed up so beautiful for Shabbat with their little children with their pretty little dresses. My daughter was dressed very nicely, but no Neiman Marcus or any of those kinds of things. Then as we started going I started moving up because I felt more confident until I was in the front of the shul. It was very interesting how I progressed to go up there. But I started going to services there because afterwards they had an Oneg Shabbat and I didn't have to make dinner on Friday nights. It was wonderful. So then I said, ?This is a good deal; I think I'll start going on Saturday mornings because those big Kiddushes; another free meal.? And that's what I did. So then when my husband left, I went to go see Rabbi Edelman who was the rabbi there and told him of my circumstances. And he knew who I was right away. He said, ?I don't know your name, but I know that you come every Friday and every Saturday, you come here.? And I said, ?Yes, I do.? I didn't want to tell him I came here for the food. [Laughing] And I really didn't after a while. I came because I enjoyed it. But that got me there because that was two less meals I had to not use food stamps for. And we started talking. My daughter Andee was now four years old. He said, ?What are you going to do next year when Andee goes to school? Where does she want to go to school?? And I said, ?Well, she's going to go to Three Village School District,? which was a very good community. The shul was in Port Jefferson in New York on Long Island, North Shore. It was very nice. He said, ?Well, if we could make it happen, would you want to send her to an all-day Hebrew school?? ?Oh,? I said, ?I would really love to, but I've got to be honest with you. I can't 7 afford it; it's not within my means.? And he said, ?I'll make a deal with you. If I can come up with half the tuition, can you raise the other half?? And I said, ?Well, I don't know.? He said, ?I'll give you the names of organizations.? And I said, ?Okay.? I sat down, Barbara, and I wrote to the board of Jewish Education, Hadassah...I can't even remember all the places. I wrote to everybody, telling them my story. And I felt like Evita; the money kept pouring in. And I went to the rabbi and I said, ?Here, I did it.? And he said, ?I'm proud of you.? So my daughter went to Solomon Schechter in New York for kindergarten. Then my parents lived here in Vegas. So my parents wanted us to come out. I got my divorce? [Barbara sneezes] Bless you. See that means it's true, in Judaism. Did you know that? Do you know that if somebody says something and someone sneezes either while they're saying it or right after it, it means it's the truth and not a lie? Did you know that? No, I didn't. Okay, so now you know. So we came here to Vegas with nothing. My house?did I sell my house? Yes, I think I did sell my house, but I was living there. How did your parents come to live here? It's interesting. My mother was in the antique business. So my parents traveled to England twice a year to go buy antiques and then they would come out here two or three times a year. My mother said when it was time for my dad to retire-- my dad retired in '76. My daughter was born in '79. He said when he retired they were going to get rid of their little Levitt house, which they got a $168,000 for the $8,000 house. I thought that was pretty great. This was the house they bought for $1 down 8 It was a choice of moving to England or moving to Las Vegas. I was like kind of upset. My daughter wasn't born then because they went in '76 and she was born in '79. But I figured my parents had to do what they had to do and it was only an airplane ride away. So they moved here. They sold everything. Those are the days we had station wagons. We don't have station wagons anymore. They had a lamp and a box and that's it. They sold everything. I said, ?My god, what are these two old farts going to?these two old people going to do in Las Vegas?? They were like newlyweds. And what were their names? My mother's name was Shirley and my father's name was Allan. And their last name was Brooks. Brooks, right. That was my dad's name, Brooks. So off they went. It was amazing. I was so proud of them in those days. That was difficult. Usually it's the kids that were going, not mom and dad. My daughter and I used to come out and visit them. They stayed in an apartment, Vegas Towers over on Maryland and... Flamingo? Somewhere around that, a big, tall building. They were up on the ninth floor, I remember. But the funny thing is my mother said when she moved into the apartment, she said, ?I don't know, Jackie; there's something wrong with this apartment.? I said, ?What do you mean, Mom?? She goes, ?Well, I don't know. I've never lived in an apartment since before Dad and I were married. There are so many telephone outlets.? Not the plugs but the telephone outlets. Well, come to find out that the people that lived there before, it was a call girl ring. [Laughing] They were on the phone a lot. So my mother said, ??Oh, my god.? I said, ?Mommy, 9 don't worry about it because you don't have their phone number, so nobody's going to call you.? But that was so funny. Oh, that is funny. They had all these telephone outlets. So you moved out here with your daughter to join them. Well, yes, to join them because financially, like I said, I had this divorce and I was on welfare; I couldn't make it. It was kind of like sad because I had a very good job and I worked there sixteen years and I got pregnant and I left. And then he left. If he didn't leave, I still would have been working. In those days I was making forty-nine thousand a year. That's back in the seventies. That's a lot. Yes, it is. I had a very good job. Where were you working? Originally, it was called Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation. But then when we got into the space program in 1964 with President Kennedy, it became Grumman Aerospace Corporation. I worked in the data reduction department where I worked on airplanes, reducing data from flight tests and testing wing-stress tests and everything. The pilots would be flying and doing tests and I'd be on the ground getting all the feed from it, the numbers when they would make their turns and their rocks and everything and I would jot these down. Then I had equipment that I would go work with and reduce the data into readable format for people to do. And I worked on the EA-6B, the F-111, the F-14. I worked on the Albatross, the EA-6B [HU-16]. I worked on all these airplanes. So then when space came around, the space program, I worked for Grumman. I will show you?if you want to turn this off for one second, in my office I'll show you? 10 What are you going to show me? Oh, my photo of Apollo projects, with President Nixon, and all that. Oh, cool. I'm going to pause this as we look... [Pause in recording] So the Apollo program was important and you showed me those pictures. Yes. I worked at Grumman for sixteen years and I left when I gave birth. I took a leave for a year and then got ready to move here. I tried to get a job before I came here and they didn't have a job for me at Grumman and Bethpage. But they said, ?We're in the midst of a contract with Ford Aerospace,? our competition, ?to take over Beatty,? upstate here in Nevada. And since I was going to be moving to Nevada and I knew everything?because after the space program quieted down, I moved into employment, personnel. So they said, ?That'll be perfect because we'll need to process new employees and everything.? So I packed my bags and I came here. I remember the night they told me to watch the news because nobody knew who was going to get the contract. Lo and behold, Ford Aerospace got the contract. So I took the luggage back to Pic'N'Save, which is now Big Lots. I didn't need the luggage, so that was that. I hunted around for a job. And every hotel that I went to?because there wasn't too much call for Aerospace; nobody wanted anybody here doing any work with airplanes or spaceships. Every hotel that I went to wanted to hire me, but they said, ?Do you have any union experience?? And I said, ?No,? because Grumman never had a union for the employees. I said, ?But how hard could it be to negotiate a culinary...what are you fighting over?? I didn't know. Forks and knives? I said, ?I don't understand this.? But anyway, so I couldn't get a job. I went to Temple Beth Sholom, which was next on my list, to introduce myself because I wanted to join a synagogue. Andee was six years old and I wanted her to embrace her heritage. 11 We moved here in August of 1985 and I wanted her to go to a Jewish school. So I met the rabbi, it was Rabbi Lederman. We had a long talk and he asked, ?Hmmm, are you looking for work?? And I said, ?Yes.? He said, ?You want to be my secretary?? I said, ?Oh, you know what? I'm going to be honest with you. Number one, I never made a living typing. I just didn't. I will tell you in high school I was a pretty fast typist, but I never got paid for it.? And so I got the job working there. So I was Rabbi Lederman's secretary on a part-time basis. They didn't have much money in the budget for office help. So I went to the Hebrew Academy and I spoke to Tamar Lubin. Oh, no, what had happened the April before, my mother went there to enroll her. She spoke to Dr. Lubin and she said, ?I'd like to introduce you to my granddaughter,? and opened up her wallet and all these?she's the only grandchild she had?all these pictures came out. So for the first year there my parents paid for the tuition because I still had nothing. So I started working at Temple Beth Sholom part-time. I would work until one o'clock in the afternoon. I met Elaine Steinberg; she was the first person from Temple Beth Sholom that I met. [She was on the Temple Beth Sholom Board.] I met somebody else that we're still friends today, thirty years later, Jay Hafter?s mom. I don't know if you know Hedda Abbott? ? She does a lot of work with the Jewish Federation. Anyway, so [Jay] hired me, but it was only part-time and I needed more money than that to survive. Then Elaine said, ?How would you like to come work with me part-time after work?? I asked, ?Doing what?? She said, ?Well, I am part owner in a travel agency, Prestige Travel.? I said, ?Oh, my god, another thing; I don't know anything about travel, nothing?Well, the only thing I do know is that I had done a lot of traveling.? I was very fortunate with my husband, when things were good. He was vice president of Helena Rubinstein. I got to travel 12 with him all over the world because it's an international company. I said, ?That's about all I know?I'll bring you my passport, whatever.? So I worked for her. What I did mostly was organize her because she is the world's worst organized person. I'll tell you. Later on, after all the years, she called me up when they moved to this house they're living in now and asked if I would do her a favor and come over and help and get her organized. So anyway, so I worked for her after that. Beth Sholom?Jerry Welt was upset because I was working for Beth Sholom and I was working for Elaine and between the two of them I was below poverty level with my salary. Why was he upset? Well, he was on the board of directors and he thought that it was not right that they would have an employee that had to be on welfare. The synagogue was very kind to me and gave me ten dollars a year more than poverty level. So I was worse off then, because now I had to pay for my electricity and pay for all this food. But, it worked out. It was good. Then I finally got the job full-time. What year did they put you in a full-time position? Let's see: I started there in '85. Probably '87. So within the first couple of years they changed you. Oh, yes. I didn't say anything. I was just happy just to have a job being a single parent in a place that the only people I knew was my mom and dad, I mean these were not peers. So I became friendly with Roberta Sabbath. Who was the other person? Oh, Sandy Walton and myself and Debbie Gold. We were like the three musketeers. Then I met some other women. Jewish Family Service Agency had a free program for 13 parenting. I went to those classes. And I met other women that were single like myself; some were widowed, some were divorced, some were never married. It didn't matter because we were all in the same circumstance now. I've always had that belief. I had a friend that had a baby and never married the husband. People used to say, ?Oh, that's terrible.? What's so terrible? I'm in the same boat she is; I have a child and I don't have a husband. It doesn't matter how we got here to be a single parent, but we are. But some people still discriminate about all that kind of stuff. While I was working at Temple Beth Sholom, it was Ira Goldberg?you know Ira? Isabel, his wife, was the director of Beth Sholom. She took over Leo Wilner's position when he passed away. She started in '84; I started in '85. So I worked for Isabel. Ira was the youth director? He was a guidance counselor at Bishop Gorman and he got a job as the counselor at Green Valley High School. So he was stepping down from doing the youth program. I said, ?I'll do it; I'll do it.? I was the youth director at Temple Beth Sholom I believe from like 1989 to 1995. What were the responsibilities of a youth director? I handled USY and Kadima. Kadima was more socialized because the kids were much younger; they're four to sixth graders. So the big event that we had every year is I would take them to Ojai, California for a Kinus weekend up at Camp Ramah. Kids loved it. And I was pretty good at what I did. The kids related to me. I got along great with the kids. We had a special quarter [for a payphone call] and that quarter I took to every event. And the thing that was so special about it is if you misbehaved you had to call your parents to come pick you up. So that's what we did and it worked. 14 I used to walk through the airport with sixty-five kids. They always walked along the wall with their left hand touching the wall. People laughed at us when we were in the airport. I felt like the Pied Piper. All the kids had to have one hand touching the wall so I'd know where they were at all times. We had matching T-shirts. It was a lot of fun. The kids and I got along great. One year there was this kid called Zach Buebeck. Zach had fire engine red hair and I don't think in my lifetime I could count how many freckles he had. He had so many freckles. He was a real rabble-rouser. He was in, I think, fifth grade. So I told everybody, ?We're going up to Camp Ramah. I want you guys to have a great time.? I didn't stay in the cabins with the kids; we stayed in the adult place down at the bottom of the hill and the kids were in all the cabins. I said, ?You can do whatever you want to do this weekend, but make sure not one counselor comes back and says something was bad about Las Vegas.? So they all said, ?Yes.? So we're all having dinner one night. I think it was Saturday night. One of the counselors said, ?Oh, my god, you don't know what went on.? I said, ?What? What went on?? One of the boys went down to the creek and got a water snake and went into the cabin where all the girls were and he ran around with the snake, scaring all the girls. I said, ?Oh, my god, where was he from?? She goes, ?Phoenix.? I said, ?Oh, thank God.? Later I found out that back when they caught him [Zach], they said, ?Now, which chapter are you with?? He said, ?Phoenix.? [Laughing] Fun memory. Some of these kids were unbelievable. Then I remember one year we had one kid. He was a heavyset little boy. I don't remember his name. But we had carnival games and one of them was they had a dish of Life Savers and a straw and it was in flour. What you had to do was blow the 15 flour away and like suck up the Life Saver. Whoever could do the most Life Savers...Well, this kid sucked up the powder, the flour. We had to rush him to the emergency room. He couldn't breathe. His lungs were coated with flour. I was so scared. Oh, no. Oh, no. He was so lifeless. And I remember Bob Fisher had to carry him and we put him in the car and we ran to the hospital in Ojai. I know Bob, yes. Okay, yes, Bobby Fisher, my little Bobby Fisher. That's funny. When Bob came to town, Isabel didn't?well, I don't know if she knew or not. But she said to me, ?Oh, there's this guy coming to town. You're going to really hit it off.? Bob and I had become the best of friends. He's a great guy, yes. When he bought his house, because I was retired; I w