Monthly Archives: January 2013

Weekly Photo Challenge- love








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Weekly photo challenge- Illumination



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Breastfully speaking!

By choice pink

I just read where a Miss America contestant representing DC is planning to have a prophylactic mastectomy. She lost her mother, grandmother and aunt to breast cancer and she feels by doing the surgery she can possibly save her life from that cruel disease. I know her decision comes with lots of controversy. I know because I too made that decision four years ago. In my story I lost my mother to breast cancer (when I was 15) and I discovered (as I was doing her family tree when I was 36) she had 4 aunts who died from the disease. On top of that my older sister developed it and has been the only survivor. Ironically, my sister had the genetic test and discovered she was not a carrier of either of the two known breast cancer genes. I am a strong believer my family’s gene has yet to be discovered considering 6 generations of women in my family had breast cancer and all of them lived in different areas (so environmental can’t be used as a conclusive reason).

For those of you who want to judge her decision (and mine) don’t be so quick until you have walked a day in her shoes. The fear is so powerful especially when you have seen that disease strike so many of your family members.  I watched my mother struggle physically as well as mentally after she was diagnosed with breast cancer.  I also witnessed my sister’s struggles with it. I knew I didn’t want to walk in their foot steps if I could help it. I didn’t want to be the next victim. I felt I needed to arm myself and get as much information as I could to see how I could be proactive. I wanted to be one step ahead instead of sitting back and possibly waiting my fate. If there was a treatment or something else I could do to reduce my chances, then hell, I was going to do it. Why wouldn’t I? How many more signs did I need to prove my chances of getting the disease? It was enough for me to have 6 generations of women to fall victim to such an ugly disease. I didn’t want to wait any longer.

After getting several opinions and doing lots of research I was devastated to discover removing my breasts was the only option which gave me the highest chance of not getting the disease. Sadly with all of the money seemingly going to breast cancer research we are not much farther along as far as preventing (let alone for a cure). Mammograms are antiquated but are still our only main way of screening. It pissed me off but what could I do? Funny enough, I had thought for years I’d have the double but I had hoped when the time came I would have had other options. Now, I do want to make it clear there were a couple of other options but they would not have benefitted me. For example there was tomoxifen. The problem with that was it’s successful on tumors which are hormone driven which in my family the tumors had not been. Plus, the side effects were terrible. Then there was the option to have mammograms, sonograms and MRI’s on a regular basis. Well, considering my age and how many I already had, there was some danger in having so many over time. The only option that was definitive in lowering my chances by 97% was the double mastectomy.

Listen, I wasn’t blind to the fact that many people thought I was crazy to make such a “drastic” decision over something they felt may not happen. What if I never got breast cancer and here I had done the surgery? It is interesting that the norm in our society is to “wait and see”. But, how many lives does that attitude end up taking in the end? Plus, people, how many more clues did I need? There had already been 6 women before me in my family.  Why would I want to play Russian roulette with my life? Gosh, if I were in the business world and I had seen 6 possible clues the stock market was going to crash, I wouldn’t just wait and see. My livelihood would be far more important. Therefore, I would do what was needed to secure my wealth. Well, I view my life and those 6 women in my family who had breast cancer the same way. I just couldn’t risk waiting and seeing when there were so many clues right there in front of me.

Even though I felt I had substantial proof my chances of getting the disease was high there was another factor which so many of my friends and family failed to realize. What about the fear women like me carry around?  A huge factor in my decision to have a prophylactic mastectomy was about my emotional well being too. At the end of the day when I put my head on my pillow did I believe I had done all I could have to live a full and healthy life? Each night I always had that fear of possibly getting the disease. I had a young son and a partner I wanted to be in their lives for years to come. For me it was a no brainer because I was ready to stop being scared. I had been carrying it around for way too long- ever since my mother died. There was never a day that went by where I didn’t worry and it was exhausting.

Listen, I’d be lying if I said I did the surgery without any question or concern. Gosh, on the contrary! I wanted other options and if there had been, I would have taken it. To choose to have my breasts removed was drastic and by no means a choice I wanted to have to make. I was terrified. Leading up to the surgery I started having panic attacks. I was choosing to take my own breasts to the gallows and it was a very difficult thing to do. They were a part of me and even with all of their imperfections they were mine. I was choosing to have a part of me chopped off and making that decision was not taken lightly. But at the end of the day I had to make a decision based on the facts I was given. Five women in my family died because of breast cancer and my sister who also ended up getting it at 37 years old was the very youngest of all of the women. I was 38 and needed to make a decision. I felt very strongly I wanted to be proactive. I did not want to play the game of Russian Roulette.  And so at the age of 38 I had a double mastectomy with reconstruction. The kind of reconstruction I had was where they placed an expander behind my pectoral muscle. Over a 3 month period they slowly expand it by injecting saline every 3 weeks or so. The pectoral muscle eventually expanded far enough to become part of the inner tissue of my new breasts. At the end of the 3 months I had another surgery where the expanders were removed and implants were put in it’s place. Now for those of you who don’t know what that means, let me explain. Because my pectoral muscle is no longer hidden behind my breasts, I can now independently move my breasts. Yep, that’s right. I have been given a new talent. Just one of the perks (no pun). I’m sorry if that was tmi. I enjoy adding a little humor to all of this.

In all seriousness though, when I got home from my second surgery I was hit with a wave of emotion that I couldn’t understand. Where the hell did it came from and why?  My partner, Carol, held me as I cried. After a few minutes she whispered, “You can breathe now, MaLea. It’s over. You don’t have to worry anymore.” It was a defining moment for me because I realized she was right.  I didn’t have to live the “wait and see” game anymore. The power in knowing breast cancer no longer had control over me was an incredible feeling to say the least. A huge weight had been lifted off of my shoulders ( if only it could have come off of my hips, arse and thighs too) and I felt free. For the first time in many many years I was finally freed from the oppression of a disease that took my mother away and changed my sister’s life forever.

Listen, I haven’t walked away from this experienced unscathed. There has been a price in freeing myself from the fear of breast cancer. I have been left with two long scars across my breasts and I there is no longer an areola or nipple. I have muscle cramps in my breasts because my pectoral muscle still wants to go back to it’s original location.  When I get cold, my pectoral muscle shakes which means my breasts shake. And lastly as a result of my surgery I can no longer feel Carol’s soft touch across my breasts during our intimate moments. Even so, I have never looked back or second guessed my decision. Unfortunately, I had to lose something of mine in order to gain a new outlook on life. I suppose you could say that was the trade off (whether I like it or not).

For all of the women out there who have had to make or are making the difficult decision of having a double mastectomy, please know you are not alone. There are many of us here who stand quietly with you in solidarity. I have to tell you, taking life by the breasts (horns) isn’t always easy but the life it saves may just be yours.

Breastfully yours!


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My Confession

Alright folks, I have something I have to confess. At one point in my life it would have been a tough confession to make but now at 42 years old I can embrace this truth and call it what it is. It is who I am. So, are you ready? Well, ready or not, here I go.

I, MaLea Perkison Jr. , hereby admit without question that I am most definitely “weird”. Yep, that’s my admission and I’m sure there are many folks out there (who know me well) who would be willing to confirm this fact. Listen, it isn’t as if I mean to be “weird”. It just happens. Yep for me “weirdness” just happens. I can’t explain it. It comes naturally to me. It’s similar to how some folks have the natural ability to do math or play an instrument. Well in my case I have the propensity to be “weird”. I promise you I’m not exaggerating. Let me give you a few examples.

First, how many of you out there find the urge to save a worm you see in the middle of the road about to be squashed by a car? Would you be willing to stop an oncoming car in order to get the worm to safety? I’m guessing there aren’t many of you out there who would. Well, since I am confessing I must admit I have not only saved many worms from the middle of the road but yes, I have even stopped an oncoming car in order to keep the worm from getting squished. However, does it make me any less “weird” if I told you it was my partner who was the on coming car? No? I didn’t think so.

And if that wasn’t enough of an example to exemplify my “weirdness”, I have more. Yes, lots more!

When I go on my many walks it isn’t unusual for me to keep an eye out for any unfortunate creature who may need my help. Often, I will save a worm or two that I see in a puddle of water. G-d forbid! I can’t have one drown! It bothers me to the core to walk by one without helping it. What if I was that worm? I’d want someone to help me. And if there are large numbers of drowning worms, I easily become overwhelmed and feel guilty I couldn’t help them all. I know! I’m talking about a worm here. There is just something about animals (and worms) that bring the “weirdness” out of me. There is a squirrel who lives in a tree in our backyard. When she sits on a tree limb that is close to our fence, I always say, “Hey squirrlley! How yah doing?” Now, I know I’m “weird” but I fully understand the animal is NOT going to answer me. I just think it’s rude to be looking at each other and at the very least one should say hello.

Here’s the thing when it comes to other living things. I don’t like to hurt any of them even when they are in my house. If even a bug is in my house, I will go to great lengths to try to capture it to take it outside. There have been times when in the process of saving it, I accidentally killed it, and in those cases man do I feel terrible. I can’t help but think what if I were that creature? I wouldn’t want to be squished. Heaven’s no! That’s also why I feel even worse when I’ve tried to save it. Once, I volunteered  to help our veterinarian hospital by taking care of two birds that were rescued. Once they are nursed back to health, they are re-released back into the wild. Well, folks, I accidentally killed one of them. It was terrible. Needless to say, I never did that again.

But, it’s not only animals who bring the “weirdness” out of me. Nope, not at all. I’m proud to say my “weirdness” is non discriminating. Get this- when I am in a public place and I see someone I know (but I can’t remember their name), I will go right up to that person and start rattling off a list of personal facts about them. Yes, I know. Most people would either walk away until they remembered that person’s name or  go up to the person, say hello and even say something like, “Where do I know you?” Not me, though. Instead without meaning to I scare the shit out of people (especially since in most cases they don’t remember me). I don’t mean to scare them and sadly I don’t even think about what I am doing-obviously. In my head I’m trying to remember their name through the facts I remember about them. However, I understand I shouldn’t be saying those facts out loud and certainly NOT to the person. But, I don’t think about that until after I’ve scared the hell out of them.  One time when I was in a local bookstore I saw a woman who I had recognized. I couldn’t remember her name which bothered me. But instead of going up to her and introducing myself I chose to walk right up to her and say, “Don’t you have two children? A boy and a girl? Doesn’t your husband work at the so and so company and y’all vacation in Florida every summer?” Yes, well, I’m sure you can only imagine the look on that woman’s face. She didn’t have a clue who I was and how I had so much personal information about her. Typically, it’s my own partner, Carol, who will tell me what I’ve done and only then will I think to introduce myself.  However by that point I’ve freaked the person out so much they just want to get away from me.

And folks, my people “weirdness” gets better! Once when I was taking a summer trip to Israel I was on one of those really large planes. You know the ones that have a row of seats to the right and left and one down the middle. Well, during this trip I was sitting towards the back and was in an isle seat on the right hand side. Not that it really matters for the sake of this story but for whatever reason I had to tell you. Anyway because I hated to fly, I got very very nervous before and during the flight. So as soon as I got on the plane I took my dramamine to help me relax. I fell asleep and woke up about three hours into the flight. When I woke up I noticed I couldn’t find my eyeglasses. I began to panic because they were my only pair and I needed them to see. I began sorting through my things on the floor in front of me but I couldn’t find them. The people around me noticed I was panicking so they asked how they could help. Before too much time had passed I had at least 20 people helping me search for my glasses. The longer time passed without me finding them the more nervous I got. After 15 minutes and still not finding them I got out of my seat and started looking on the floor around me. But, I wasn’t alone. There were those other 20 people also looking with me. As I was standing in the isle bending down to look under a passenger’s seat, a woman who was helping me search approached me. She stopped to ask me what the glasses looked because she wanted to get the flight attendant to make an announcement over the intercom. With great frustration because the woman had stopped me from my search I rudely told her, “My glasses are orange and are shaped like cat eyes.” Just as I started to turn away from her to continue searching, the woman said, “So, they aren’t the eyeglasses you are wearing?” Just as she said that I could feel the blood rushing to my face. OH NO! I had been wearing them the entire time!? How did I not know that? Well, I had to think quickly. I couldn’t have all of those people thinking I was an idiot! After all I had another 5 hours on the plane with them. So, I turned around and looked at the woman and said, “Gosh, no! I am looking for my spare pair that look just like the ones I’m wearing.” I then said, “But at least I have these if I can’t find my other pair.” She had to know I was a total idiot. First of all, my beet red face had to give it away and second, as soon as she pointed out I was wearing the glasses she could clearly see my entire body relax. I couldn’t believe I had 20 strangers frantically looking for the very glasses I was wearing. OY! Only me!

Another time during one of my trips back to the States from Israel I had to sit in the middle seat. I hated to be trapped but the flight was packed and I had no choice. I was out of dramamine, so when I noticed the headphones and TV, I thought that would be a good distraction for me. When I put the headphones on I looked for the right buttons on my chair to change the TV channels and to make the sound louder on my headphones. I started to panic when I realized the TV worked but my headphones didn’t. The thought I’d be on the flight for 8 hours with no distraction sent me into a total panic. I frantically started pressing the volume button (as if that was somehow going to make it work). Next thing I knew the gentleman to my left (who was sitting on the isle seat) jumped out of his chair all while trying to get his head phones off of his head. He had been resting in his seat while listening to music. My first thought when I saw him “crazily” jumping out of his seat was lucky me to be sitting next to a weirdo with out being able to use the damn TV. Just as soon as I had thought that, it dawned on me what I had done. I had been pressing his volume button! I felt terrible. Here was this seemingly nice older man (probably in his late 60‘s) relaxing and I with one push of a button scared the shit out of him. Who was the weirdo then? Yep, that would be me! Once again, only I could manage to do such a thing.

Now as if all of those things weren’t enough, how about this? It is not uncommon for me to be wearing the same clothing whenever you see me (of course with a wash or two in between). And it’s not uncommon for me to leave my house wearing a piece of clothing inside out and/or backwards.  In fact I will go through the entire day before Carol notices and points it out to me. The sad part is I have no idea I’ve done it until she tells me. Now when I was in college and was taking art classes, I purposely wore my shirts inside out. Because I inevitably ruined my clothes in the art studio (getting paint on them or whatever other chemical was in the studio) I tended to wear the same clothes over and over again. So, when the outside of my shirt was full of stains, I was known to flip the shirt inside out and continue to wear it. In fact before Carol and I were dating I remember her coming up to me during painting class to tell me I had my shirt inside out. I will never forget the look on her face when I told her I was aware my shirt was inside out. She was shocked I’d admit doing it on purpose (because of stains on the other side).  At the time I didn’t see where it was so weird. Having no washer or dryer I was only preserving my clothes. So, what is my excuse today? Why do I continue to wear the same clothing? Well, what if I said my excuse today is I like to keep the amount of laundry down. Don’t believe me? You’re right. I have no reason except I am comfortable. I like my one outfit and that’s that. As far as why I wear my clothing inside out, well, sadly, I can’t explain. These days I don’t do it on purpose so I must admit it’s very disconcerting.

And as if all of what I have told you so far wasn’t enough to prove my “weirdness” to you, I’m certain this next part will certainly convince you. Get this- while I’m sleeping I will yell all kinds of obscenities. I swear to you I am completely asleep and I have no knowledge of what I’m doing. I’m serious. I have witnesses! My son has woken me up on several occasions so that I’d stop. The other night Carol said I was yelling (in my sleep), “G-d damn, fucking ass hole!” And get this- she said according to what I was saying it was all over a mop. A mop! Really? Come on folks! How “weird” is that?!  Now listen, I am no angel and I do use a few colorful words now and then but the words I use in my sleep and how I use them are by no means what I ever would think to use in my waken state.  Imagine the looks I get from my friends and family when I’m telling them what might happen during the night when I am spending the night with them or if they are at my home. At first I think they believe I am exaggerating. However, once they hear me they realize I was not.  Sadly, I often don’t disappoint (in proving them wrong) as more often than not I give quite a rousing show. Ask my step daughter who just recently spent the night with us. Folks I was sleeping upstairs and she downstairs and apparently she heard me very clearly!

Here’s the thing. It’s not as if I wake up in the mornings and say, “OK, MaLea, what “weird” things can we do today?” Here’s the thing. I know I could excuse my turrets in the night (as Carol calls it) because after all I can’t help what I say when I’m asleep. But then, what’s my excuse during the day time when I’m fully awake? Can’t make up any excuses for those situations.

Take me cooking for example- It never fails something dramatic happens whenever I’m in the kitchen cooking. Once I was making pancakes. I had placed the flour mixture in the bowl and was walking it to our stove. Now folks, our kitchen is literally about 7 feet long and 3 feet wide. Me saying I was walking it to the stove meant I was taking literally one step over. Well apparently that was all I needed for the next thing to happen. As I took my one step I seemed to have slid on something slippery on the floor. As I was sliding I felt the bowl wanting to fall out of my hands. I was worried I was going to drop the bowl on the floor and break it. As it started to slip out of my hands I had a brilliant idea. I’d just give the bottom of the bowl a little push towards the stove (hoping it would land neatly there). But, why would that happen? Instead of pushing the bowl towards the stove I ended up throwing it towards the ceiling. Luckily as the bowl was coming back down I was able to catch it so I was able to avert that disaster. However, I only caught it after the bowl had flipped upside down once and spilled the entire contents onto the stove, floor and me.  Carol must have walked into the kitchen just seconds after it happened. She took one look at me and the floor and said, “Good Lord, MaLea! What the heck happened here?” Before I could answer she replied, “Never mind. Whatever it was I’m sure it was done in perfect MaLea form.” And to that she was most definitely correct.

Oh and listen to what I did last week. I was walking my dogs and I passed a house that I have admired for years. Carol and I love the 1950’s/60’s style and this house was the epitome of that time period. I had often daydreamed that we had bought that house and of course lived happily ever after. Well, you can only imagine how shocked I was when I saw a bull dozer demolishing it. I stopped in front of the house and while staring at what was happening I stood frozen in disbelief. But of course in my MaLea fashion, I didn’t stop there. As I stood there I said, “Who’s the idiot to have such a great house torn down?!”  I hadn’t realized I said it out loud until I noticed a woman (with her two young children) standing to the right of me. She gave me a wave in such a way as if to say, “Hello! I’m the idiot.” I smiled at her, gave a tug on my dog’s leashes and proceeded walking. Whoops!

And folks, believe it or not my “weirdness” continues. Carol and I had gone to her parent’s house. I was driving. When we got there, I got out of the car, grabbed my purse and proceeded to head to the house. As I was Carol said, “MaLea, don’t you want to take the keys out of the ignition?”  If that’s not enough I on a daily bases lose my keys and my cell phone. Also, I worry incessantly. Because of that Carol has banned me from reading the labels on medicine bottles about the side effects. The fact is I will psychosomatically have one of the reactions if I do.  Meanwhile, I don’t have to read a label to take my worry overboard.  Oh no, not at all. I can have a pain in my arm or leg and before you know it I’ve made it into something catastrophic. I must give credit where credit is due and that would be to my wonderful, imaginative brain.

Listen, I’m sure you are thinking, “I wonder when she knew she was “weird”?” That’s a fair question to ask. If I am to be honest with myself I suppose I have always known but I didn’t have a name for it. When I was about 9 years old I remember my mom telling me, “MaLea, you beat to a different drum. You’re different than other people. Know that’s OK and never let other people put you down for it.” At the time I didn’t have a clue what she was telling me. In my early 30’s I thought I had it figured out. Then, I thought she was referring to me being a lesbian and with my partner we have a child who we raise in the South and in the Jewish religion. But, that wasn’t it. Now in my 40’s I have realized my own mom was actually trying to tell me I was “weird, kooky” (of course in a loving motherly way) and I just needed to embrace who I was.  Momma, where ever you are in heaven, thank you! Alright, I may be “weird” but I’m not dumb. Of course my mom was referring to me being a lesbian but I’m sure she saw my “weirdness” as a small child too and suspected I’d have to deal with that as well. I’m sure she knew that it too wouldn’t be easy. And truth be told, it wasn’t. There have been times where those crazy, “weird” things I do upsets me because I know they have kept and keep me from many normal things in life. I know they have caused many obstacles in my life and have kept me from certain successes I wanted. Listen, do you remember having a toy when you were a kid where you would take a specific shaped block and stick it into the same shaped hole? So, if you had the square block, you’d stick it into the square hole. Well, I have to admit I often feel like a square block trying to be shoved into the round hole. I just don’t fit. TO me the round hole represents the normalcy that is expected in life, in society. And no matter how much I try to shove myself into that round hole, I can’t ever seem to fit.  So often I wish it wasn’t necessary for me to fit. Why can’t we just co-exist? Why can’t there just be an understanding of our differences and from there we utilize the talents that come from both? Unfortunately that isn’t how life works, is it? Here’s the thing. I am not against conformity and I do see an importance for it. But, try being the square in a round world. How can one conform to a world they can’t fit into or understand? Just today I heard someone say, “Everyone has a talent and a special ability. It’s about finding that specific talent and fitting it into the larger society.” That made perfect since to me. I have to stop trying to fit my entire (square) self into the (round) world because it clearly doesn’t fit. Instead I need to find a smaller (square) part of me. I don’t know how in the hell I’m going to do that but maybe it can open up some new options for me. I hope it will allow me some peace with who I am allowing my “weirdness” to work as an advantage instead of what has been a disadvantage.

I, MaLea Perkison Jr., hereby admit without question that I am most definitely “ADHD”.


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Davis Family from Birmingham, AL

Davis Family Tree

(original name in Romania was Davidavitz- Dovidavitz-Davidowitz)

MAX (Hebrew name: Mordechai…father was Dov) (born 1871) (died January 14, 1938) – RACHEL (Hebrew name:Rachel) (maiden name possibly Israel?) (born 1875) Died July 21, 1948

  • both immigrated from (Roma?) Romania in 1895
  • Max was said to be a hothead. When in Romania it was said he got into an argument with a man at the town’s open market. The argument was over a horse. Max got so at the man, he picked up a rock, hit the man and killed him. Max was a wanted man for the murder of that man and so Max fled with his family to the United States.
 Children of Max and Rachel:

1) Jennie (Hebrew name: Shendel) Buried with Davis last name at Knesseth Israel Cemetery in Birmingham, AL (born in Romania       in 1891- died May 5, 1947 (breast cancer) married Mr. Mendlecohn (also Mendlesohn). They divorced by the time their child was 4.

1a) Son of Jennie & Mr. Mendlecohn: Maurice Mendlecohn (or Mendlesohn) (born ? 1929 ish died 1951?)  His mom is buried as Jennie Davis…found a grave at the same cemetery with a Maurice Davis…Born: Nov. 2 1907 and died Mar 14, 1952. Not sure if this is him.  Maurice enlisted into airforce-was a pilot.  married Rita (?) and had one son.                     

1b) Grandson of Jennie & Mr. Mendlecohn: Maurice, Jr. last name? (born 1953?) Rita (?) remarries and lived in Greensboro, NC?

2) Henry (born in Romania in 1893) married Rose Lebowitz (Romania to Toronto Canada) lived in New York

As told by Howard Davis from family memories- “Rose was also Romanian and her whole family was from Toronto Canada. She met Henry in New York, while on a shopping trip, they lived together, got married and had my father, Irwin on 1/8/1918. He took her down to Alabama in 1919 and according to family stories, Henry was a gun-toting wild man. My grandmother, Rose fled with her son, Irwin and ran away back to her family in Toronto. Henry was a madman and would abuse everyone. Henry went wild and came to Toronto looking for his wife, Rose and his son. Her uncles protected her and chased Henry away. My father was raised my his loving mother Rose and never knew his father. My father, Irwin, became a chemical engineer and moved with my mom, Eva, to Philadelphia. According to my mom, Henry came to Philadelphia in 1951 looking for his son, and my father refused to see him. As a child I remember my father talking to his aunt Matilda from Alabama. On 10-16-1963 my father Irwin Davis died from a heart attack at age 45. We received numerous condolence western union telegrams from Alabama.” 

2a) Son of Henry and Rose= Irwin Davis (born Jan 8, 1918 in New York- died Oct 16, 1963 from a heart attack) married Eva

2b) Grandson of Henry and Rose: Howard Davis (born 1954) married ?

Son: Ryan Davis (born 1987) married in 2013 to Marissa (maiden name?) Davis (born ?)

Daughter: Erica Davis

3) Oscar (born in Alabama 1900 died Dec, 24, 1963) married Sara Mendlesohn (born in Alabama 1913 & died Aug 10, 1990

3a) Daughter of Oscar and Sara: Delores Davis (born Dec. 1939) married Jack Berlin (date?)

3b) Grandson of Oscar and Sara:Lynn Davis (male child born Nov 1940) married Cookie (birth name?) (date?)


4) Della (Hebrew name: Eidel) (born in Alabama but 1920 census says Romania) (1901 died October 24, 1939) married Louis Wallock (Hebrew name: Levi) born: May 14, 1891 and died December 31, 1926 (born in Russia). Louis immigrated to America in 1910. Was killed. Incident unclear) Part Of Precinct 33 Bessemer City 4. Della’s yahrzeit is at Temple Beth-El in Birmingham, AL It’s interesting to see her business was est. the same time of her death:

Company Name: Della Wallock Shops, Inc.   Company Number:808 – 829    Business Type:Domestic Corporation Status:Dissolved   Registered Date:10-25-1939    Place of Formation:Jefferson County Business Nature:GENERAL MERCHANDISE BUSINESS ETC    Capital:$2,000    Agent:n/a

4a) Son of Della and Louis:Lawrence Everett (Larry) Wallock (born 11/24/1924 & died 8/30/1991) married 9/7/1947 to Beverly Doris Berman (5/7/1927 & died 2/7/1989)

4b) Grandson of Della and Louis: Layne Wallock (born 1948)

4b) Granddaughter of Della and Louis: Debbie Wallock Spitzberg

5) Mathilda (born in New York 1905) married Ben Goltsman (born in Penn 1870) Had been married before with a child. Because of that during this time the family didn’t like. He also had no money and way to support Matilda. Ben sold a label of cheap wine in Montgomery, AL and became very wealthy. The company was called: Ben R. Goltsman Bottling Company Inc. It was established on July 1, 1952. File number 748-742. Address:145 COOSA STREET MONTGOMERY ALABAMA 36102. Ben’s son Larry took over the business and in 1963 tried to expand the business.

Ben R. Goltsman Bottling Company, Inc. is a Florida Foreign Profit Corporation filed on August 1, 1963. The company’s filing status is listed as Inactive and its File Number is817249.

The Registered Agent on file for this company is Standard Distributing Co. and is located at 375 North Ninth Avenue Pensacola, FL 32502. The company’s principal address is145 Coosa Street Montgomery Alabama, FL 36102 and its mailing address is 145 Coosa Street Montgomery Alabama36102.

The company has 3 principals on record. The principals are Calvert,b W from Montgomery AL, James G Hawthorne from Montgomery AL, and Larry E Wallock from Montgomery AL.

Ben and Matilda were well thought of in the Montgomery society. Ben also owned the baseball team. They had a chauffeur and maids. Was told that when Della died Lawrence went to live with Matilda. And when Jennie and her husband died Maurice too went to live with Matilda. Maurice goes into the airforce and returns safely. Ben buys him a plane. There is a wedding in Colorado. Maurice, Sidney and Larry were going to go on the plane. Larry got sick at the last minute and couldn’t go but Maurice and Sidney go. The plane crashes on their return trip and Maurice and Sidney are killed. Matilda was never the same after the accident. She drank heavily. They never divorced but lived in separate homes. No one forgave Ben for buying the plane. In Ben’s obituary it stated Larry was his adopted son.

5a) Son of Mathilda and Ben: Sidney S. Goltsman (born in AL 1925 died 1951?) All lived in Clanton, Chilton, AL by 1930 census

6) Isadore (born in Alabama 1909 (1910?) died 3/12/04 ) married Rose Shugerman (born in Alabama 1910 (1909?) died 1/2/76 Former owner of Davis Produce Grocery along with brothers.

6a) Daughter of Isadore and Rose: Carol Gloria (middle name believed to have been created by Carol, not parents) (born AL 9/11/36  died 1/15/86 breast cancer and lung cancer) married Norman M. Shved (born Brooklyn, NY 6/9/33 died 11/17/07 lung cancer)

6a: Granddaughter one of Isador and Rose and daughter of Carol and Norman: Morrie Norma Shved (born GA 9/27/63) married Leon J. Shelkoff (born SC 8/25/58 ?) Children of Morrie and Leon: a) Cari Lei Shelkoff (born GA 5/8/87) married (June 28, 2015) Michael Steckel (born Pittsburg)  b) Jules Meryl Shelkoff (born GA 4/14/90)                  

6aa: Granddaughter two of Isador and Rose and daughter of Carol and Norman:MaLea Norma Shved (born GA 4/8/70) partnered Carol A. Breland (born GA  8/1/61) Previously married and has a daughter, Kaitlin Frakes (born 7/26/87)  Children of Carol and MaLea: Judah Kol Breland (born GA 8/10/03)

6b) Son of Isadore and Rose: Melvin (born 1940 or 1941?) married Jane (?) Children: Robert Michael (born 1973?) married Miriam (?) Isadora born ?

7) Dorothy (Hebrew name: Devorah) (born in Alabama) born: September 20, 1908 and died: October 31, 1953 married Walter I. Morris (Hebrew name: Zahav) (born: July 22, 1891 and died: April 27, 1960) Dorothy lived in a boarding house in 1930 at the age of 19 before getting married. No children.

8) Abe (born 1912) married Elsie (also Elise) Shugerman (born 1914)

8a) Abe and Elsie’s son: Herbert (Pudgy) had car accident- brain injury. (born 1934- died 2011)

8b) Abe and Elsie’s son: Albert M (born 1940) married ? Children


LEZA DAVIS (Hebrew name: Malka Leah) (her father’s Hebrew name: Mordechai Dov)  (born Feb 14, 1889) (died: May 12, 1968) in Romania)(aka Aunt Sister) Her father’s Hebrew name was Mordechai Dov – LEON NEWMAN (Hebrew name: Avraham Lev) (born April 5, 1885 in Romania) Died: July 3, 1959 Neither were naturalized by the 1940 census It was thought that “Aunt Sister” was the oldest child of Max and Rachel but that would have made Rachel too young to have had a child. The thought is Aunt Sister is actually Max’s sister. a) Isadore (Hebrew name Yitzhak) (born in Alabama) born: June 13, 1911 and died: April 22, 1965-  married Miriam Berman (born April 11, 1921 and died: January 29, 1977 b) Harold (born in Alabama August 12, 1918 and died June 27, 2001) married Shirley Fink(?) Children: a) Marsha Newman P…  b) Larry Newman

Newman, Harold “Hal”

Newman captained the football at the University of Alabama in 1940 and was named third team All-SEC (Southeastern Conference) that season. In 1998, Harold was featured in an exhibit at the Museum of Southern Jewish Experience called Shalom Y’all: A Road Trip through Jewish Alabama.

Birth and Death Dates:
b. August 12, 1918 – d. Julne 27, 2001

Career Highlights:
Born in Alabama, Newman attended Ramsey Technical High School in Birmingham where he was an all-city, county and state tackle his senior year (1935). Newman then attended the University of Alabama and redshirted in 1937, but was a member of the Tide’s Rose Bowl team that played on January 1, 1938 (he did not play). The following year, he started at right end in two games (playing in all games) as Alabama had a record of 7-1-1 and were ranked No. 13 in the country; their only loss came at the hands of No. 2 Tennessee, 13-0. The following season, Newman firmly established himself as a starter at end as Alabama finished 5-3-1. That year, he earned second team All-American honors and was named to the Birmingham Post All-SEC team. Alabama coach Frank Thomas called Newman “the best player in the South” and he was the Bama Cup recipient as the University’s most outstanding athlete for the 1939-40 year.As a senior in 1940, Newman was named captain and the Tide won their first three games of the year before losing to No. 4 Tennessee, 27-12 (it was Alabama’s third straight loss to Tennessee). The Tide then won their next four games before losing the final game of the year to No. 9 Mississippi State, 13-0. Alabama finished the season with a record of 7-2-0 and Newman was named All-Southeastern Conference third team despite playing much of the season injured. He also played in the 1940 Blue-Gray Game and started at end for the Grays.

After graduating, Newman was drafted by, and contracted to ($165 per game), the Brooklyn Dodgers of the NFL football club for the 1941 season. Before he could play for the Dodgers, however, Newman was drafted into government service. During World War II, he was a co-captain of the Randolph Field (San Antonio, Texas) Ramblers, who went undefeated and untied and won the 1944 National Service Team championship – they also finished third in the Associated Press poll behind Army and Ohio State. Newman then appeared in the 1945 Poi Bowl held in Honolulu in a game that matched the U.S. Army Air Force All-stars vs. the U.S. Navy All-stars. He was later Athletic Officer at Ft. Belvior, Virginia in 1945-46.


Career Dates:
Newman played end at the University of Alabama from 1938-1940.

Information on Harold is from:


Harold was 6’1 and 210 pounds when he played for Alabama


Posted by on January 8, 2013 in AL, Shugerman family


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Photo of the week- Resolve

IMG_6903 IMG_6904 IMG_6905 IMG_6906 IMG_6908


Posted by on January 8, 2013 in Weekly photo challenge