Saturday, February 16, 2013

Sympathy Saturday ~ Remembering Aunt Margaret

My husband's aunt, Margaret (Handler) Levine, passed away a year ago. She had lived a long life and was cherished by those who knew her. I only got to meet her a couple of times and could see why everyone loved her.

She had been a widow for over 30 years and had no children, but I wanted to share a bit about her to ensure she will be remembered.

Margaret Handler was the second child of Joseph Handler and Lena (Hollander) Handler, and the first of their children to be born in America. I wrote about the passenger lists that showed Joseph's arrival in America in 1910, Lena's arrival in 1911, and Lena's return arrival in 1916 with their two children, Arpad (Arthur) and Margaret, after having gone back to Hungary for a visit.

I have also written about Joseph Handler's naturalization, which includes birth information for his children. This indicates that Margaret was born August 26, 1914, in Cleveland, Ohio.

Margaret contracted polio as a young child, supposedly on the return trip from Hungary in 1916. She survived, but had a limp for the rest of her life.

Margaret married Meyer Levine on June 23, 1947, in Akron, Ohio. As you can see from the marriage record below, Margaret and Meyer were neighbors on Rhodes Avenue. The marriage record notes that "Margaret Handler is 33 years of age on the 26 day of August 1946," implying that she was born on August 26, 1913, a discrepancy with the birth date noted above. August 26, 1913, is also the birth date recognized in the Social Security Death Index.

Ancestry.com, Summit County, Ohio, Marriage Records, 1840-1980 (Provo, UT, USA, Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010), www.ancestry.com online database. Record for Meyer Levine and Margaret Handler

Aunt Margaret (known as Aunt Marge) and Uncle Meyer lived in Akron their entire lives. Uncle Meyer died in 1977.

Section of letter from December 1985 from
Margaret to her brother and sister-in-law
In 1985, Aunt Marge sent a letter to my parents-in-law which included a clipping from the Akron Jewish Center News. Part of her letter:
"I'm enclosing this picture and write up of me which they published in the Akron Jewish Center News, this paper goes to every Jewish Home even if you do not belong to the Center. This article was a complete surprise to me. I was sitting and talking to the Director of the Center Sr Adults, and I was just talking about our lives, not knowing she was taking it all down. Then she said that the one that takes pictures for this paper would take my picture for the paper, I balked, I said hey I didn't want to be in print."
But when the picture came out, she was pleased with it and allowed it to be submitted.

Following is the newspaper clipping that she included with the letter:



What a lovely way to remember Aunt Marge! And I love the smile on her face.

She celebrated her birthday in August 2011 with a party that included her younger brother (my 88-year-old father-in-law) and a few other family members. Although family members said it was a party to celebrate her 97th birthday, I believe it actually was her 98th birthday. (And her obituary (see below) noted that she was 98 when she died six months later.)

~~~~~~~

Aunt Margaret died just a year ago. May her memory be a blessing.

~~~~~~~

Akron Beacon Journal, Akron, Ohio. (Online database, GenealogyBank.com).
Obituary for Margaret Levine, 19 February 2012

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