Tribute to Sy Genislow

Tribute to Sy Genislow

Where do I begin in terms of sharing my impressions of this man who raised three children, one of whom, was my wife? I suppose with the first words that come to mind, musician & a man who was always the life of the party. Sy was always quick with a joke, an anecdote, or a funny story sure to put a smile on everyone’s face. I remember the time Sy, Selma, Jeri, & I went to the Palomino Club in North Hollywood before Jeri & I married, and the place was empty (was daytime) but a song came on the jukebox and a woman came up & asked Sy to dance and he obliged her and it was a beautiful example of style & grace. Sy may have lived a good portion of his life in L.A., but he always retained that East Coast, New York character.

And by that I mean, he never ceased to amaze me because no matter where we were, he could strike up a conversation with total strangers in a heartbeat & would soon have everyone smiling or laughing. His musical talent never ceased to impress me & I believe he was happiest when he was entertaining others. Sy & Selma lived a long & fulfilling life together. I envy their travels together & they covered more miles & led a more adventurous life than any couple I have ever known.

Sy loved his children & grandchildren deeply and was a constant in their lives. This man worked hard his whole life to provide for his family & was always a pillar of strength for his family, friends, & relatives. In addition, Sy gave of his time to entertain the residents of a facility for those in their golden years by playing music with a group of his friends, for many years. This clearly reflects the selfless nature of this man. Sy also was a regular at Temple throughout his life. And befitting a man of Sy’s stature & character, as he neared the end of his days, he asked but one thing of his daughter, Jeri, and his son, Howard, he wanted to pay his last respects to his father’s grave in New York. His remaining children, God bless his departed son, Norman, & his grandson, Ryan, lovingly honored Sy’s last request. And I’m proud to share that Sy’s grandson, Ryan, my son, showed real character when they were in New York by physically lifting his grandfather & carrying him across an obstacle that wouldn’t allow them to cross over with Sy’s wheelchair. I’m sure this touched Sy’s heart.

Sy, Selma, & I had many disagreements over the years and there were hard feelings from time to time but, I have nothing but the deepest respect for this man, his sense of humor, his life of hard work, his talents, and it is all very evident in the example of the children he raised!

—Rob DeLoss, Newport, Oregon, August 22, 2009

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