My mother-in-law, Shirley Spiegelman, nee Shankman, passed away this past Shabbat. She was 88.
Here she is in her high school days:
My wife, Batya, will be flying out to attend the funeral and then return before Shabbat to complete the "shiva" mourning week here at Shiloh.
My wife's sister's husband publishing an obituary here. My father-in-law, Sidney, will be 93 this August and is doing well.
My wife has posted already several blog compositions here, and here. She's taking a notebook with her (we're not electronically mobile: no Tablet or SmartPhone, etc.) and many more remembrances will be up next week.
I think she was the first real committed healthy-eating mother I met and I ate granola for the first time in her house and her salads were way more varied than what I had at home. Her passion for culture, the theater and museums, was very real and her determination to complete her higher education and a college degree was awesome. She also volunteered for the Great Neck Synagogue Sisterhood and its shop, pushing Israeli-produced merchandise.
She was there for the births of most of her grandchildren and lived to hold her fourth great-grandchild in her lap (and arrived for three of their births, my daughter updates me)
When she visited us in London where we were as emissaries for the Betar youth movement, she was quite impressed by the accents of our two oldest girls who already were talking, "just like Shakespeare", as she quipped. In our Jerusalem apartment in Bayit v'Gan in a winter time in the early 1970s, I once found her virtually sitting on the radiator trying to keep warm. My very belated apologies for that to her.
She had an amazing aptitude for languages and while her speaking of Hebrew was, well, passable, her comprehension was on a high level and she would even intervene in conversations I was conducting with full understanding of what was being discussed. In later life, she and her husband were active participants in a Yiddish Winkle club.
She was definitely opinionated and was always involved in the agendas we dealt with.
As my wife recalls, she was very much a take charge person.
May her soul be bound up in the everlasting life.