Sunday, October 23, 2005

The House My Ancestors Lived In: Ioannina, Greece

About my Uncle Hy, from The Kehila Kedosha Janina Newsletter, Nov. 2005:"Hy was born April 27, 1922 on the Lower East Side of New York (54 Orchard Street) to Bechorak (Morris) Genee and Firo (Fani) Genee, both born in Ioannina. The youngest in the family, Hy celebrated his first Bar Mitzvah in Kehila Kedosha Janina Synagogue in 1935 and, just recently, on June 11, 2005, celebrated his second Bar Mitzvah to a packed house who braved the early summer heat to applaud his accomplishments. A graduate of Seward Park High School (class of 1939), Hy went on to serve his country in World War II in the U.S. Army from 1943 to 1945 and was in the Signal Corps in the European Theatre. Hy, like many of the Yanniotes who founded and worshipped in the Kehila, worked in textiles. He was the sole proprietor of Hi-Mart Pants for 40 years, making and selling men’s trousers. For the past 59 years, Hy has been married to his lovely wife, Lil, the mother of his two children, Lois and Marty, both of whom now also serve on the Kehila Kedosha Janina Board. He is also the proud grandfather of four.
Hy has always been active in community affairs and has served as an executive board member of the B’nai B’rith and was a president of the United Brotherhood of Janina, among other positions. Always dedicated to Kehila Kedosha Janina, Hy has served as the President of the synagogue for the past 30 years. Without Hy Genee, none of what we have been able to do would have been possible. Thank you, Hy! We are eternally grateful." For more information on Janina go to the Kehila Kedosha Janina website.

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