about her – family, friends, community, the deeper the grief and sharper the pain. In my wildest dreams, I never thought I would have to eulogize my baby sister. She is my only sibling and it has taken the two of us 50 years to truly fall in love with each other. It is with deep love and great pain that I stand before you all – her family and her friends to The worthier the person, the greater the loss to the living. The more she meant to those share some tidbits of Amy’s life that unfortunately has been cut down too soon. Living through the years of sibling rivalry, a broken home, the traumas and joys of childhood, the marriages, the careers and the raising of our children, it was really only in the last few years that we have had the time to step back and take the time to really know each other. It was then that we began to understand each other. And Amy I understood very well. Born to Harvey & Shirley Axelrod on March 5, 1953, she just enjoyed her 53rd birthday. She grew up in Little Neck, New York and we shared a house with our folks on 248-34 Van Zandt Ave. For the first 11 years with Father Harvey and the next 10 years with step-father Larry.
Amy was a bit of a rebel, a real fireball, a hippie of the 70’s keeping everyone in the family on their toes. Amy was fun-loving – never missing a rock concert, a state fair, a Las Vegas trip or a night on the town. Amy was very generous, both with her time and with her money. She was great on the computer and a technological wizard with gadgets and figures. Amy was compassionate, she was flexible, she was quick witted, never failing to send me a joke each day on the internet. And she was adventurous, never afraid to try something new, - constantly re-inventing herself to take on a new challenge. I would marvel at how she was never afraid of a new job or challenge. How could you stay in the same job for so many years she would always ask me? Aren’t you bored? How many of you knew that Amy worked for a horse vetinarian, worked in a kosher butcher shop, and worked selling real estate for the owners of the New York Mets. Whatever field of endeavor she decided to try, she went ahead and did it. And Amy did things spontaneously – she would get an idea and immediately follow through on it. Always having faith in the future way things would turn out. She took the rocky & risky road at times, but always said - what the heck – why not take a chance at life. I’m doing it! But most adoring of all qualities about Amy – she functioned from her heart first .” “We’ll talk about how it worked out afterwards” she would say, - “ this is what I feel like doing now.” She said what was on her mind with no censorship and no reservation. She was refreshingly honest and I think that that is the quality that Gene fell in love with - along with the rest of us.
Which brings me around to the best part of her life – her daughter Megan and husband Gene. Let’s start with Megan. At the age of 40 Megan, your mother gave birth to you, and boy have you made her proud. Whenever I spoke to her, the first thing out of her mouth was praise and admiration for all of your accomplishments. A straight A student who has succeeded so far in everything that she does, including the wonderful Bat Mitzvah that we attended in November. Megan – shoot for the moon because this is what mommy would have wanted for you. She will always be watching and cheering you on. Cherish your memories of her and continue to make her proud and take on her best qualities and pass them on to your children. . And Gene – what can I say to you? You and Amy had your entire lives ahead of you. with so much to look forward to. I only hope that you will find the strength to deal with this and find comfort in the joy of Megan, & your children and all of your extended family and friends. You have set an example for all of us of what mature love and companionship is all about and have demonstrated in countless ways what a superior human being you are. Amy recognized that and loved you dearly for it. To all of your children – Watch how your dad conducts himself in life and model yourselves after him.
And to my mom – Words cannot express the worst pain of the human experience – the passing of a child. It is not supposed to be this way, but you must be strong because Megan and Gene and I need your strength. You brought us Amy and we all thank you because everyone here loved her and you were the one who made her lovable. She not only looked like you but had your heart of gold.
And to me – her Sister Linny - we spoke everyday, sometimes twice and it was usually on my train rides back and forth to work. I greeted her with a “Hi Amala! “ And she greeted me with that familiar “ Hi Linny”. I will never be able to remove her name and number from my cell phone and my train rides will never be the same. And we would share our thoughts of the day & check with each other how mom was doing and then bragged about our terrific kids. We shared the weather – the blizzards and the hurricanes, discussed politics, our jobs, the latest face cream and reflected on past life in Little Neck. She never let me forget that when I babysat for her when we were young kids, I forced her to watch horror movies with me – my favorite was “The attack of the 50 foot woman.” She didn’t sleep for weeks after that. Whenever she had a sleepless night she would say –“ it was the 50 foot woman Linny.” - And we would laugh ourselves silly. She always enjoyed keeping in touch with old friends and was planning on attending her high school reunion in a few weeks. She loved her friends – past and present and they were a very important part of her live. We even recently began sharing some of our aches and pains but decided not to complain too much to each other for fear of stealing the show from mom. When she complained of a headache, a told her to just take two advils. Who would ever imagine the events that followed.? Thank you Amy for giving me the blessing and gift of having a sister. My mother said to me once that friends come in and out of your life, but a sister is there always. Stay close she said - And we did! And -
To all the people that she loved and touched, I thank you on her behalf for making her life worth living. I thank the medical team that tried so hard to save her life. I thank the Aunts and Uncles, Cousins, next door neighbors and neighbors down the street and beyond. I thank the in-laws, and all the steps in our extended family. I thank the babysitters and the household support, the employers and I thank the friends from the past and the present. And I especially thank the spouses and the children. Amy - We will never forget your gorgeous spirit, your big green eyes and your heart of gold.
May your soul rest in peace and may you right now be standing on that top step on the “Stairway to Heaven.” Fly high with the angels!
Love, Your Sister Linny.