Menu JTA Search

Cousins Meet After News Item

Two cousins, only one of whom knew of the other’s existence, met for the first time last month, thanks to a Jewish Telegraphic Agency news story.

Ruth Lang, of East Brunswick, New Jersey read the article about Morris Ghitzis, an 88-yearold Chicago resident who writes for a Yiddish newspaper in the Soviet Union, in the April 22 edition of the Jewish Journal of Raritan Valley, according to Jewish Federation of Raritan Valley.

Lang recognized Ghitzis, a former pharmacist who is the only published American Yiddish authoin the USSR, as her father’s first cousin, according to the federation.

“Years ago my father told me he had a cousin in Chicago,” Lang later told the Journal, “but I had no idea he was alive, nor did I know that he wrote. I immediately called my daughter who lives in Chicago and had her look up the name Ghitzis in the telephone book. Sure enough, not only was his name listed, but he only lived five minutes away from where she lives,” she said.

Ghitzis and his wife Monya were totally unaware of this new branch of the family. “Because the name Ghitzis is hard to spell and even harder to pronounce, “explained Lang, my father changed his name to Glitzer when he came to America in 1904.

“Ghitzis two brothers changed their name to Geddes when they came over in 1927. Because of these name changes, Morris did not know what happened to the rest of his family,” she said.

“The reunion was beautiful,” Lang told the Journal. “The minute I saw (Ghitzis), I knew he had to be related. He had the striking brown-rimmed blue eyes so characteristic of our family.”

NEXT STORY