2016. Another Year, Another Birthday without Franala

How does time keep marching on when Fran is not here with us? Hard to have imagined a life and a world that didn’t have her gorgeousness in it. Gorgeousness. Her demeanor, her attitude, her joyfulness of everything . . . where has that gone? The shortsightedness is in me. I know it is. I am selfish to have wanted more time with her. I know many of you feel the same way. She had a way of making everyone around her feel that the world stopped while she asked a deep question about you. She wanted to know everything. She wanted to experience it all, feel it all. That gorgeousness was not just about her outside beauty, it also described the richness of her soul. I’ve been thinking about Fran all day today, wondering if she is a singing angel, entertaining God and joyfully flying from corner to corner of the world spreading charm and hope. That’s how I see my Fran. That’s how I remember her. And when I cry over the fact that I have not spoken to her or set eyes upon her in so long, I try and understand that her audience is now a wider one. With different goals. I love you my Franala. Happy Birthday. I celebrate the day you were born. Love, Cheryla

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Happy Birthday Franala, 2015

To Our Dearest Franala, we miss you so much! Can’t believe how your friends and family are getting older and we wonder, where are you? YOU stay the same, young, vivacious, self that we all knew and loved. On this your birthday, you are on my mind. It’s a foggy day in Annapolis and the winter is finally over, the snow is melting. Such a cold winter we had with temps below zero. But now, with your birthday, the meaning of spring will become more apparent. Every time I see a pretty sunrise, sunset, a perfectly formed camera moment, and especially a beautiful piece of music, you are there with me. I feel your strength and love on my shoulder, looking over everything I do. You are going through life with me, seeing the world through my eyes and hearing the world through my ears. We are together and I share the quiet moments, the laughing moments, and the in-between with you. When I listen to your music and your voice, a smile comes over me from deep within my heart. When I listen to the few tapes I have of you – the personal, off stage you, I feel the love and joy. In heaven, I see that you are treated as the Diva that you are, the sweet soul that we know, and wish for you many timeless birthdays to come. As long as there is breath in your friends and family, we will remember you. As long as there is YouTube, the world will know the richness of your talent. I love you my Franala . . . your Cheryla

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Where is Fran Interred?

I was asked by a visiting friend of Fran’s to give him the location of where she is buried – he wanted to go to the gravesite, as he promised himself he would, if he visited NY. Marco is from Milan and shared many a good time and stories with our Fran.

I looked through the emails to see if I could find the cemetery location. I wasn’t at the burial ceremony because, as some of you might remember, it was during one of the biggest snowstorms in NY – and trains weren’t running from (Annapolis) Baltimore to NY. In fact, the funeral had been postponed once because of the weather and even though the snow was still falling on the next scheduled date, the loved one’s of Frans traipsed out to say their final farewells. I found emails stating that the cemetery was Cypress Hills Cemetery in Brooklyn. But today, I found out that Fran was interred at Shearith Israel Cemetery in Queens, NY. I am so sorry that I sent Marco off on a bad errand, and thanks to all who replied to tell me the correct cemetery. Ohy vey, I’m so sorry that I didn’t know. So next time I’m in NY, I now know where to go too, to say a few words over the earth where our angel lays. My sweet Franala, I’m sorry I gave Marco bad directions! I love you as always. Cheryla

Beth Olom Cemetery, part of Shearith Israel Synagogue, 2 Cypress Hills Street, Ridgewood (Queens), New York 11208. Website: www.shearithisrael.org/
Phone: 718-277-6255

Thanks Hagai for your very welcomed map, details, and arrows.

From the Lovely Marco: At last I could find Frances’s tombstone. Funny thing is that I was quite close the other day, in fact I passed it on my way to another cemetery as it is not far from a fence. You know, that day was cloudy and overcast here in New York but today, well, today was one of the brightest of my stay here. So, maybe Frances wanted to be found while the sun was shining and people were gathering for worship being a Sunday and honouring their mothers as Mother’s Day. As for the Jewish custom, I looked for a stone and I put it on the gravestone. I took a picture just before this, please find it attached to this.

I am very happy I could do this. As I told you, when I heard she had passed I promised myself I would say bye “properly” one day and I was able thanks to you: if you didn’t write to your friend, I would have never learnt her proper place of burial and consequently I couldn’t keep my promise. So, thank you very much. I said bye from all of us, both in English and Italian!

Thank you Marco. With love, Cheryl


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Another Year of Missing You

Cheryla & Franala Feb. 2005

Cheryla & Franala
Feb. 2005

My dearest Franala,
Another year of missing you. Your birthday meant we always spoke on the phone, no matter where either of us traveled to on that day. On your birthday, in particular, we would sing to each other, I would play my flute or concertina for you, and you would give me your rendition of one of the songs from The Sound of Music or perhaps Oklahoma. I miss you so much and can’t believe it’s another year. Every song I hear, I hear you. I see your smile in a crowd or hear your laugh and still look for you. Big hair that we both have? Catches my eye and I look for you. You were infectious, joyful, filled with wonderment. I pray that I have a little bit of you still, in how my personality has transformed into characteristics of yours. I pray that I have your heart. I miss you my Franala. My love as always, Cheryla

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Happy Birthday Sweetheart

My dearest Franala,
It is your birthday today. Is anyone singing to you for your birthday? Is there an orchestra to play behind your voice as you go about your business in heaven? It wouldn’t be heaven unless that was so!! Do you get to eat chocolate, ice cream and cake without worrying about calories? Do you hear us all speaking about you and congratulating the spirits for letting us share in your presence for as much time as we had together? You did not like the aging process and fought to keep your beauty, but you really didn’t have to fight so hard. Your beauty showed through in everything you did, what you said, how you acted, how you were a friend, sister, aunt. There are so many people who miss you and continue to share your artistry by clicking on the YouTube videos to see your beautiful face, that vivacious talent, and oh that gorgeous voice. We miss you, we’re selfish to have wanted you here longer, but your spirit couldn’t be contained and so you flew. Fly my sweetheart angel. You are in my heart forever. Love, Cheryla

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Oh Fran, We Miss You So

Selfish that I am, I miss you. Are you far, are you near? I hear you singing when I walk with my iPod and plug you in. But I miss your laugh and the ability to make new memories with you. I worry that I cannot feel you with me any longer, and that is probably as it should be. Have you moved on to another body? Have you moved on to a musical venue that I can’t hear or see? Where are you? I’m so sad not to have you in my realm any longer. Selfish that I am. I want you back! I’m sad to know you are a statistic of cancer death. I wanted to see you on the Kennedy stage once again, perhaps celebrating honors to you. As it should have been. You honored us with your presence, your amazing talent, and the ability to make all of our lives better. You loved this season of hope and peace. May you have peace where you are and know that you are still loved by all who met you. I love you my Franala.

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Memorial Concert in NY – December 27, 2011

Dear Family and Friends of Frances,
In honor of Frances’ yorzeit
Michael Philip Davis has announced a memorial service
to be officiated by Cantor and Rabbi Jill Hausman
11 a.m. on Tuesday, December 27, 2011
The Actors’ Temple
Congregation Ezrath Israel
339 West 47th Street, New York

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A Birthday Wish

Dearest Frances, No matter where you are, the date only means one thing to me, and that is celebrating the day you were born, came into our world, and gave us such joy.  You were an angel here on earth, and while we had you with us, you gave a variety of gifts every day that you lived.  We applaud you, standing on our feet, yelling, Brava, until we are exhausted, living more full lives because of the sheer breath of your talents.  We miss you.  As for me, you are on my shoulder every day.  I speak to you and sing to you, we play our instruments for you, but mostly, we miss your physical presence.  May you find peace where you are, enjoying stretchies, ice cream (Italian style of course), and old musicals (perhaps you are singing with the original casts of many of our favorites).  With love forever, Cheryl

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Vocal Music Scholarship

I was a classmate of Fran’s from Central School, Ladue Jr High and Ladue High School. We were in Choraliers and Chorale together. I am greatly saddened by her passing. The Ladue High School Dad’s Club, of which I am a member, has decided to sponsor the Frances H. Ginsberg Vocal Music Scholarship. This will be given annually to a Ladue vocal music student to be selected by the vocal music teacher. I know that Fran would be proud, honored and humbled by this gesture. My deep condolences to her family. I feel I am a better person because Fran was in my life. Howard Tash

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December 26, 2010

Memorial Service Delayed Until Tuesday 28th due to Snow Emergency (previously scheduled on Monday)
Dear Friends, The memorial service for Frances will be held at the Jewish Plaza Chapel, 91st & Amsterdam, NY, at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 28. There will be a funeral service at Cypress Hills Cemetery, and then a reception to follow.

I will be posting a notice about another memorial service in Frances’ honor, which will be held in approximately 30 days. Thank you for sharing your hearts and your love for Frances here.

Caleb Ginsberg, Frances’ nephew, started a charity two years ago in honor of Frances’ courageous fight. Donations in Frances’ name can be made, in lieu of flowers, to: Motivating Miles Foundation, 6 Foundry Street, Amherst, NH 03031 www.motivatingmiles.org Tax ID#: 27-0353582.            Love to all, Cheryl

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