21
Sep

Eulogy for Judy Menashe z"l

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Today, we pay our respects to Mrs. Judy Menashe. Judy is survived by her husband Victor, children Phillip, Shelly and husband Paul, David and wife Shannon, grandchildren Sarah and husband Tygh, Jamie and husband Chris, Jeff, Jacob, Josh Jesse, Kelly, Jamie Marie and great grandchildren Ashton and June.

On the Jewish calendar, we find ourselves in the Aseret Yemei Teshuva, the tens days of repentance.  It is an intensely reflective time of the Jewish year. Just a few days before Yom Kippur, our holiest day - we've come together to share our reflections on the life of Judy of blessed memory. Judy’s children Phillip, Shelly, and David helped me put together these thoughts:

Judy was an outgoing person.  From a very young age, Judy was undoubtedly THE most popular girl in her social circle.  She was also a superior athlete: In fact, many of her contemporaries remarked that when it came to sports, there was no real point in attempting to compete with Judy...Her love of sports continued into her adulthood and married life - she was an avid golfer and tennis player...the list goes on.   Judy successfully passed on her enthusiasm for sports and athletics to her children and grandchildren, it was from Judy that her kids learned the ropes of football, baseball and basketball... A devoted mother and grandmother, she could always be counted on to attend various sporting events, gymnastics competitions and the like...

Judy was also a very talented singer, channeling her love of singing primarily to her grandchildren, whom she treated to a regular medley of folk songs.

These are just some of the reasons those that knew Judy used to say that if they had to live life again, they would love to "come back as Judy"...

Her children recall that the kids playing on the back porch would wait for the honk of Judy's horn so they could help her take in the groceries – their help was not totally altruistice; it was in exchange, of course, for Judy’s generous allotments of popsicles and fudgicles. 

Family was Judy's top priority, and life had taught Judy that  her kids' well-being would be enhanced by a rich circle of friends and social connections. 

The most fascinating aspect of Judy's vivacious personality seems to have been her unique ability to straddle two worlds.  Rooted in the values and customs of her Rhodesli Sephardic heritage, she simultaneously reminded people of an elegant, cosmopolitan Jewish Jackie Kennedy.  While comfortable with the traditional role as wife, mother and homemaker who consistently deferred to her dear husband of 60 years, Dr. Victor Menashe, Judy developed a keen sense of her own place in an ever-evolving American society; she independently acquired the skills to navigate that culture, directing her family accordingly.   In a nutshell, Judy was a paradox: as comfortable on the golf course as she was in formal attire, with meticulous attention to the way she presented itself....At ease as a supportive wife, mother and grandmother, but with a dynamic and inquisitive eye to the broader culture..

I think it's safe to say that those who have come together today to honor Judy understand those who, if they could have a second go-round, would love to "come back as Judy."  Judy Menashe was  truly a complex woman who lived life to the fullest, with no regrets.  And during this time of the Jewish year, we Jews place great value on living a life of no regrets.

Menuchata B'Gan Eden

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