June 1, 2015 |
The children sat impatiently waiting for school to begin, until one of their classmates called them to the window. Crowded around the pane, they watched as KGB men arrested their teacher outside. They never saw him again. Andris told me this story as we stood in the same spot. He was one of those kids. It was after World War II, and Latvia was under Soviet occupation. My grandfather had gone to that school, too, as did his brother, Andris' father. I was traveling with my wife and kids.
May 18, 2015 |
Who would have thought that I had Napoleon to thank for my family name? I certainly didn't when we started our trek through Friesland as part of our son Joel's graduation trip. I knew that my ancestors emigrated from this mostly rural province of Holland in the late 1800s, but I did not know many other details of the family history. Nor did I know of a connection to the diminutive French general. But that is only one interesting tidbit we discovered as we pursued our roots. Renting a car in Amsterdam, we drove through the low-lying farmland near the Ijsselmeer, the large inland lake reclaimed from the North Sea. Passing by windmills (the modern electricity-generating kind)
February 26, 2015 |
RENNARD EAST was looking for some family history. What he found was American history. For years, East (whose first name is pronounced reh-NARD) had known that his forebears settled in Philadelphia after leaving South Carolina in the 1920s. But he couldn't figure out why they migrated north. Thanks to Kenyatta Berry, one of the sleuths from the PBS series "Genealogy Roadshow," East has learned that the reason for the family's move was, as she put it, "something that changed American history and African-American history.
January 5, 2015 |
I knew about the three sisters from the letters. In 1912 my grandfather, George, left his village of Siderka (then Russia) about an hour north of Bialystok, and never returned. Throughout his life, his brothers Vladimir and Makary sent him letters. Last year my Uncle Walter gave me a box of their letters and we worked on getting them translated. I am a priest, serving the Orthodox Church of the Holy Cross in Medford, and this effort coincided with a trip our Diocesan Bishop Michael was planning to Poland for August 2014.
November 9, 2014 |
Candice and Ryan Ismirle sat on a small sofa at Crozer-Chester Medical Center, cradling their 2-day-old twin sons, Ryder and Rafe. Candice Ismirle's cousin and parents hovered nearby. In many ways, it was an archetypal celebration of new life by an extended family. But the scene was also testimony to their defiance - some might say denial - of a grim reality. At 33, Candice Ismirle is battling an aggressive, metastatic breast cancer. She and her husband, who live in Washington, conceived the twins through in vitro fertilization.
August 19, 2014 |
FOR THE Montelone family, "Surf's up" has become a rallying cry, as three of the family's five children are affected by cystic fibrosis. They are also part of a growing trend of families taking advantage of the health benefits that come with surfing. Hard to believe, but researchers have discovered that the saltwater in the ocean helps clear out the thick mucus that builds up in patients' lungs. "We have found the silver lining to it all and that has been through surfing," Paulette Montelone told the Associated Press while her five children were out in the water at San Onofre State Beach in California.
July 1, 2014 |
Dania Sargenc often joked that the neon sign above Benash Liquor Store, with its bold yellow lettering, rusty red background, and arrow pointing toward the door, would one day be hers. The sign went up in 1948, when her uncle opened the store along Route 38 in Cherry Hill. Soon her father worked there, and even through ownership changes during the next 66 years, the sign remained. Then, last week, it came crashing down. What was one man's misfortune - accidentally toppling the sign with a red pickup truck - was Sargenc's chance to reclaim a part of her family's history.
April 21, 2014 |
Gov. Christie faces an April 28 deadline on the New Jersey Adoptees' Birthright Bill, which would give adopted adults over 18 access to their full original birth certificates. The governor could s sign it into law by that day; conditionally veto it with recommended changes, as he did in 2011; reject the legislation (an outright veto); or do nothing and allow it to become law. But those directly impacted face a different type of clock. "A lot of adoptees like myself are getting older," said Karen Baranowski, 54, of Turnersville, Gloucester County.
March 17, 2014 |
The trio of Colonials in Queen Village is as charming as a storybook illustration. Indeed, the transformation of the once-tumbledown dwellings is a family saga. Ann Foringer now lives in one of the end houses with husband Scott and daughter, Mai, 17. Previously, the structure was occupied by Ann's parents, Homer and Helen Rhule, who bought it in the mid-1980s. "My father was offered a job in Center City, and my parents decided to relocate" from Westfield, N.J., Ann said. "Mother wanted to restore a house - the older the better.
May 22, 2013 |
Patti Sheehy remembers thinking, this story has everything : Bravery, romance, suspense, and an evocative historical backdrop. Plus, it was true. She decided the best way to convey the emotions as well as the political ramifications of a young Cuban soldier's daring 1967 escape to America was as a novel. "It was a story that needed to be told, and I wanted to do it justice," says the author, 66, of Haddon Heights. And while The Boy Who Said No won't arrive in bookstores from Oceanview Publishing until June 4, the most important reviews for Sheehy's literary debut are already coming in. Frank Mederos, whose story it is (he's also the narrator)