The Statue of Liberty
Seeing New York for the First Time
"On the sixteenth of November of 1950, we boarded the U.S.S. General Belleau which was a converted type Army transport ship.
My father was able to get a job in the commissary on the ship, so we had pretty good food. They had places for kids to play. My mother and my sisters were in another part of the ship.
Two nights before Thanksgiving we got into the port of New York, and I remember my father waking me up real early in the morning. He came and got me. [He] said, “There’s something,” just telling me in Yiddish, there was something he wanted me to see. I was not quite nine years old, and I went up on, on deck with my father and it was really very, very cold, I remember. That was my first sight -- the Statue of Liberty. My father and I just stood there as the ship was docking into New York, into Ellis Island.
Did I know what I was looking at? I don’t know. But it was just an awesome feeling. You could [see] these humongous skyscrapers - it was just like something out of a movie. I saw--not only my dad-- but others that were at the rail crying, and just sobbing at what they were looking at."