Commentary Magazine


Rachel Abrams, 1951-2013

To the Editor:

What a lovely tribute by John Podhoretz to his much-loved sister! [“My Sister Rachel,” July/August.] It brought tears to my eyes. After reading this touching eulogy, I feel as if I had known Rachel.

Diana Fisher
Moreland Hills, Ohio

To the Editor:

Mr. Podhoretz’s loss is the world’s loss.

Florence Bacas Snow
Orlando, Florida

To the Editor:

I’ve been reading Mr. Podhoretz’s work for years, and this may be his best. My condolences.

Dick Dilger
Pelham, Alabama

To the Editor:

I was moved and saddened by Mr. Podhoretz’s account of his sister. Insufficient as they are, I send my sincere condolences. May God give him peace and fill him with joyous remembrances of her.

Richard Browne
Brighton, Michigan

To the Editor:

I feel Mr. Podhoretz’s loss. As an 89-year-old man, I have lost so many, but they will always remain within my soul till my last breath in this world. He and his family are wonderful people, and have been a superb influence in the Jewish community. Mr. Podhoretz should stay strong and thankful his beloved sister is resting in heaven and she will never feel pain in the arms of her God.

Morris Alkes
Tamarac, Florida

To the Editor:

I am thankful to Mr. Podhoretz for the lovely stories about his sister Rachel. I’m so very sorry that he’s lost her. She was a remarkable person, and I wish I had the chance to know her. Oh, to have been seated beside her at just one dinner party!

Sharon Ellis
Southern Illinois

To the Editor:

For days I put off reading Mr. Podhoretz’s tribute to his sister because I thought it might make me cry. Well, it didn’t; instead it makes me thankful that the world has such loving families as Mr. Podhoretz’s, and such wonders as his sister Rachel.

Marianne Lown
Dunedin, New Zealand

To the Editor:

I want to express my sorrow for Mr. Podhoretz’s loss and for never having met or heard of his sister. I would have loved her. He was kind to share her with the rest of us. The world has lost a rare beautiful soul.

Cheryl Walker
South Jordan, Utah

To the Editor:

My sincerest condolences on Mr. Podhoretz’s loss. His obituary of his sister is a blessing to all of us for its reminder of what really matters in a life well lived.

Catherine Dalzell
Ontario, Canada

To the Editor:

I cried reading this magnificent eulogy. Mr. Podhoretz could have been writing about my sister, Bethy, who died of lung cancer at 48 and for whom I grieve daily. She was my only sibling. She wasn’t as adept at words—I doubt anyone could match Mr. Podhoretz’s sister, Rachel—but was with wit and charm. Rachel was fortunate to have Mr. Podhoretz as a brother, as his love stands in testament.

Lynne Lechter
King of Prussia, Pennsylvania

To the Editor:

I’ve enjoyed Mr. Podhoretz’s articles for years, and this one more than any other. This is the first obituary I’ve ever read about someone I’ve never known that made me regret that fact. I’m terribly sorry for his loss. I will seek out her writings where they are available. Those words, unlike all of us, can live forever.

Rob Whitehead
Lynnwood, Washington

To the Editor:

Thank you for the moving testimony to Mr. Podhoretz’s sister and to the possibilities of sibling love.

Marcia Tannenbaum
Worcester, Massachusetts

To the Editor:

What an amazing love story. Beautifully told with gilded edges of sadness. So masterfully delicate. Thank you for sharing Rachel’s story with us.

Lynn Antink
Winfield, Indiana

To the Editor:

This was a eulogy that transcends, that makes me weep for Mr. Podhoretz’s loss, for all our losses, and for those that never met her. For want of a brother who would eulogize us with a tenth of the appreciation and glorious perception that Mr. Podhoretz spooled out so unstintingly and ambrosially. For pity that she was not given more time, life, and opportunity to make known what she had to impart.

Marion Dreyfus
New York City

To the Editor:

I’ve long been an admirer of Mr. Podhoretz’s writing, but this one—to me—is his best ever. It made my heart sing. Thank you for sharing the majesty of Rachel with us all.

Steve Ross
Address withheld

To the Editor:

The earth stood still when I read this. Painfully and exquisitely beautiful, just like Rachel.

Liz Starr
Arlington, Virginia

To the Editor:

What a beautiful obituary. It touched me deeply and, yes, my admiration to John Podhoretz grew tremendously. Thank you for sharing a beautiful life of a beautiful soul. May the memory of Rachel Abrams be blessed.

Nathan Amitai
Closter, New Jersey

To the Editor:

I offer my deepest sympathy for Mr. Podhoretz and his family on the loss of his sister Rachel. His love for her is manifest in every word he wrote. Such an enormous amount of love, friendship, and admiration for a sibling is indeed something to be envied and admired. I would have loved to have known her.

Fran Dillon
Whitestone, New York

To the Editor:

This piece was such a lovely tribute to Mr. Podhoretz’s sister, Rachel Abrams. Having lost my husband of 34 years nearly 15 months ago, I understand profound loss, perhaps more keenly than many. Mr. Podhoretz’s words of love for Mrs. Abrams—a daughter, wife, mother, sister, and friend—helped beautifully describe the fabulous human being that she was.

Fran Benz
Address withheld




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