I was born in a small town near Frankfurt Germany and had a very happy childhood. Then the Nazis came to power and suddenly there was much anti-Semitism. My parents arranged for me and my brother to continue our schooling in England. I was ten years old.
My parents began their search to come to the United States, but had to wait three years before obtaining a visas. My mother’s younger sister had moved to New York and was hired by the head of Sears Roebuck to help bring his relatives out of Germany. Luckily my aunt was able to obtain visas for many, many families through this contact, an amazing gift.
My parents, brother and I arrived in New York on April 16, 1939 just prior to the Second World War. For many years we have celebrated this event with an ice cream cone on April 16th and now the younger generations have joined this tradition also having ice cream on April 16th. My aunt had an apartment ready for us and I was enrolled in 6th grade in a New York public school and graduated from high school in February 1945. I had always wanted to be a nurse and graduated from Adelphi College in 1947 as an RN with a BS in Nursing.
I soon left New York, first for San Francisco and then Boise, Idaho where there was a polio epidemic. In 1948 I moved to Seattle as I had an uncle there. I was hired by the King County Visiting Service where I worked to further my nursing career. I also decided to meet some young Jewish people and joined Hillel at the University of Washington where I met my husband, Will Brown. We were married April 1949.
Will was working at Boeing as an engineer, but soon decided to teach. Our family moved many times while Will was teaching. We also moved when he decided to return to school and earn his PHD in Science Education at the University of Florida in 1963. As a registered nurse I was able to find work that I loved in every community where we lived. I had jobs ranging from being a school nurse to my favorite job as a public health nurse.
We have two children, two grandchildren, four step grandchildren and one great granddaughter and four step great grandchildren.
I believe it is important to document your family and life. I am very lucky to have extensive journals that chronicle generations. I am continuing that tradition by writing the story of my life “My Life Has Been an Adventure – 80 Years of Reminiscences.” I wrote it for my family but so many friends asked for copies, that I sold the books for $35 and was able to donate $3,000 to our Infant and Toddler program at the preschool in Bellingham.
Life has not been boring.