In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 18, 2011 / 14 Nisan, 5771

Farewell to the Man Who Gave Me My Start

By Mitch Albom

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Fred died.

It happened this past week. He was my first boss. And I still don't believe it.

Wasn't it just a blink ago that he called me, out of the blue, from a newspaper in Florida where I'd applied to be a magazine writer?

"You know that job you applied for?" he said.

"Yes …?"

"You didn't get it."

"You're calling to tell me I didn't get a job?"

"Well, I read your clips. They're not bad. If you want to try sports, I might have something for ya."

Died? How could he have died? Didn't that just happen? Wasn't it just a blink ago I showed up in his newsroom at the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, wearing a shirt and tie, and was given my first assignment, to write about the retirement of Red Sox great Carl Yastrzemski?

"Don't mess this up," Fred barked. "Yaz is my guy. The Sox are my team."

Great, I figured. The man grew up around Boston, went to college in Boston, had been a sports editor near Boston -- pronounced every word as if it had been invented in Boston -- and I was being sent there for my first piece? I wondered if I'd still have a desk a week later.

Luckily, I did. Fred even said I'd done a "decent" job. Which was a golden nugget coming from a crusty, grumbling, chain-smoker like Fred. And I cherished it.

Wasn't that last week?


Wasn't it just the other day that I was peeking into Fred's office, where he moved around his desk, staring at pages, his hands dug in his front pockets? He seemed in constant motion, a former baseball player ready for a sudden ground ball.

"Yah, Albom, what do YOU want?"

He'd say it smiling. So I cherished that, too.

Fred was the kind of guy you used to find all the time in newspapers but is now an endangered species. He had a thick mustache and deep-set eyes that left him a gum-chomping cross between LeRoy Neiman and Lech Walesa. He loved deadlines, loved reporting, loved breaking news -- yet he adored sports. "Wasn't that the greatest?" he'd crow after a special game or a highlight play.

We used to share a love of oldies music. As I grew more comfortable with him, I'd occasionally pop my head in his door and croon, "He rocks in the treetops all day long…." and he'd grin and respond, "Hoppin' and a-boppin' and a-singin' his song…."

Then he'd laugh and say, "Wasn't that the greatest?"

You got pushed by Fred Turner, backslapped by Fred Turner -- and you got better by Fred Turner. He was great at bringing young talent along, but then, because Ft. Lauderdale was not the end of many rainbows, the young talent moved on. Fred never resented it. He just found somebody else.

I left after a few years for the Free Press.

Wasn't that a few years ago?


Over time, I heard that Fred had been sick. He didn't want people knowing about it. Details were like pulling teeth. I called him now and then, saw him once or twice. He looked pale and terribly thin. I eventually learned he suffered from esophageal achalasia, a rare throat disorder that makes it hard to swallow or eat. The disease is characterized by regurgitation and chest pain, and the temptation is to say it was brought by bad writing or a missed deadline.

But this was serious. More than many of us knew. Fred retired in 2005, after 25 years as sports editor of the Sun-Sentinel. And last Monday, after reportedly watching his Red Sox beat the hated Yankees, he died in his sleep.

He died? How can your first boss die? Doesn't that mean you're getting old? Doesn't that mean you've lost the only person who can confirm the opening hours of your career? Wasn't it just yesterday that he represented a new world of respect, the feeling that someone who had an important job thought enough of you to give you one, too?

It wasn't yesterday. It was 28 years ago. I am older than he was. Old enough to kick myself for not staying more in touch. Fred was 67, too young to go, but too indelible to forget. I owe him my career, because, as with all first bosses, who knows where life would have taken us if they hadn't?

"Wasn't that the greatest?"

Yeah, Fred, it was. You were, too.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on Mitch's column by clicking here.

Mitch's Archives