My mother gave birth to five children. My sister Frieda, the oldest, was born on January 16, 1918. I am the youngest, born on January 17, 1928, which made her ten years and one day older than I. Since my mother had to deal with considerable chores, Frieda was obliged to look after the younger siblings. That included helping us get dressed, shoelaces tied and making lunch for me and my brother Itzy who was 18 months older than me.
As good a person Frieda was when I was growing up, she remained that way until she passed away at the age of 96. I had the good fortune to have known her for 86 years. She was a fantastic knitter and all her nieces and nephews when born, received blankets and sweaters.
She often told the story that when she woke up on the morning of January 17, 1928, got dressed to go to school and walked into the kitchen for breakfast. But instead of finding food, there on the small kitchen table was a newborn baby brother (me). She went outside to meet her friend Ruthie with whom she walked to school, and told her she had gotten a birthday present, a new baby brother. As an adult, when Frieda would tell that story, I told her that she was mistaken. I was not her birthday gift. She was in fact my very first, best, and everlasting birthday present.
Over the course of a lifetime there are many changes, some positive and some negative, that one must deal with. There is one constant aspect available that never changes, and it is one the Haber family traditionally adheres to. We begin and end with family. The Haber children have followed that tradition their entire lives.