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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

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 March 14, 2014 / 12 Adar II, 5774

Field Marshal Fritz and his favorite nephew

By Dave Weinbaum




JewishWorldReview.com | About ten years ago, I needed a new lawyer. I was in the middle of a long lawsuit and my attorneys at the time sucked-big time! A friend directed me to a St. Louis lawyer who had just turned 70, but was considered one of the best in the state.

Part of the process of meeting Chuck Todt was checking him out on the Net. Thinking it an innocent coincidence, I mentioned that I found a man who was dressed in a Nazi Field Marshall uniform by the name of Franz Todt. When I asked if Chuck knew him, his face lit up. "That's Uncle Fritz!"

"Uncle Fritz?" I yelled back with incredulity, "He was a Nazi big shot! You do know I'm Jewish, don't you?" He proceeded to explain that while Franz was a Nazi big-wig, he represented the engineering wing of the party. His company built the autobahn, amongst other things. Franz didn't approve of what Hitler was doing to the Jews, according to Chuck. The German Todt was assassinated- shot out of the sky while flying back to Berlin after having a shouting match with the Fuehrer.

I was born at night, not last night and didn't believe that a man could get into the higher ranks of Nazi Germany by being out of goose-step with the program- and I told Chuck as much.

Chuck explained that he was different from his uncle. He was nine years old when Fritz was assassinated. He also represented many Jews, even some Orthodox ones and that he had long-term relationships with Jewish businessmen, attorneys and judges.

I took a chance on Chuck and-in retrospect-I'm a better person for it.

Phil Todt, Chuck's dad, was a major league baseball player. Phil was the cleanup hitter for the Philadelphia Athletics in the 20's and early 30's. His last team was the Boston Red Sox. Chuck would regale in tales of walking over Babe Ruth's passed out drunken-stupor of a body in his family's South St. Louis home when the Bambino and other ball players visited to hunt and party.

In his youth, Chuck was a pretty good ball player. He was so good Connie Mack visited his home and tried to sign the young Todt to a minor league contract. Phil wouldn't sign for him because he knew Chuck lacked the arm it took to be a pro.

So the young Todt worked his way through law school and eventually established the Todt Law Firm.


The first thing Chuck would do before trial discovery was "rubber hose " his witnesses. One expert he put through the ringer was the reigning Chief Justice of MO's Supreme Court at the time, the Honorable Duane Benton, now a Federal Appellate Judge in Kansas.

Judge Benton was my attorney for six years and wrote the agreement that was being challenged. I took great pride when Chuck told me I was a lot easier to prepare than His Honor.

Unlike many clients who sit next to their lawyers at the table in court, I was relegated to the fourth row. One associate's job consisted of turning around every 30 seconds to make sure that I was wax museum in my reactions to the goings on. However, Chuck, who resembled Ted Knight of Mary Tyler Moore fame… only with a brain, did the German version of an Irish jig in front of the judge, looking straight at me after a slam-dunk cross on an important witness. If he could have, he might have added a split at the end.

When we won he demanded I kiss his ring. I refused: telling him it was about time a German actually saved a Jew.

Chuck became very important to me in my businesses and budding radio career, having negotiated my first radio contract when he was 81. The standing joke with Todt was when you mentioned you needed his help with anything, he'd say, "I've done that before!" Soon we'd preempt him by following our requests with a mandatory, "Yes, we know, you've done this before?."

Chuck and his lovely wife Alice started to hang out with me and my friends --often attending Cardinal games and going out for supper. And boy! Did he love his vodka!

Alice and Chuck would go to three AM mass at his Catholic Church and pray for me many a time.

Occasionally, I would stay at their house only to have a delicious breakfast of lox, bagels, onions, capers and herring in the morning. The Catholic Todts and the Jewish Weinbaum would pray together while holding hands.

This year, Chuck got sick. A number of illnesses seemed to plague him. Finally, after almost two months of being incarcerated in Barnes Jewish Hospital and its rehab facilities, Chuck was told he was going home on February 13, Valentine Day's eve.

I talked to him on the afternoon of the 12th. He was eager to get back to work and was looking forward to taking a Viking River Cruise in Europe with Alice, me and my girlfriend Lisa.

I received a call from Chuck's cell the next morning. I answered, "Chuck, are you on your way home?" There was a hesitation on the other line. His associate, Alex, responded, "Dave, Chuck died last night."

I was stunned.

My question was answered, though.

Chuck was on his way home.


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DaveWeinbaum.com. He is a businessman, writer and part-time stand-up comic and resides in a Midwest red state.

© 2014, Dave Weinbaum

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