Suzanne sent this email message on August 2, 2003:

My mother, Rose Freedman, died on July 29th. Two nights later I overheard a man call "Love ya," to his mother as he got into his car, and she called from her doorway, "Love ya, too." I immediately thought, I don't have a mother anymore. Even though her mind died long ago, there's a chasm now. She's nowhere.

And I thought about "love ya" becoming merely a way of saying goodnight, about words losing their meaning when tossed about casually. I thought about Mother; she wasn't that way. I never doubted her love for Father, Jane, and me, from the way she treated us. Though she wasn't one to talk about emotions, she couldn't help showing them. She couldn't help showing who she was. That was the great thing about her: she was always herself, no pretenses, no airs, no self-consciousness, no attempt to be like anyone else. And she wasn't. She danced wildly to Paul Cebar and the Milwaukeeans when she was 85. She sang whenever she felt like it (even when I wished she wouldn't). She founded her own nursery school in 1939, she taught yoga in nursing homes until she was 86. She was a political activist, a peace activist, a pied piper, and not just to children. Her friend Ernie used to say, "When Rose walked into a room full of strangers, she walked out of a room full of friends."

She was open to new experiences; our play-it-by-ear lifestyle and travel style came directly from her. There's a lot to say about Mother, and we'll share our thoughts about her at a memorial service Sunday, August 10, 3:30 PM, at the Milwaukee Friends meeting house on N. Gordon Place near E. Auer Avenue.

We have a section about Mother, with lots of photographs, on our website at


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Copyright © 2003 Suzanne Rosenblatt. All rights reserved.
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