Rhoda Kotzin

On May 9, 2015, Adam Markovitz and Allison Billi got married in Ann Arbor, Michigan. At the wedding reception, I chatted with Rhoda Kotzin, whose grandmother was Helen Frydland; (“Aunt Helen” to the Hurwicz family), sister of Sara Lea Frydland. Rhoda told me that Leo slept on the couch at Helen’s apartment in Chicago when he first came to the United States in 1940. Leo gave Rhoda piano lessons. She was about seven at the time.

Rhoda’s father (whose given name was Adolph) was also called Adek, like Leo’s father. Moshe was Rhoda’s paternal grandfather. Leo usually referred to him as Moritz. He emigrated to Canada soon after World War I. Rhoda also said that Rhoda’s father (Adek) and Leo’s father (Adek) had the same grandmother and grandfather, so they were first cousins. In fact, since the two brothers had married two sisters, Max and Moritz’s children would have exactly the same grandparents, namely, the parents of Max and Moritz, and the parents of Sara Lea and Helen.

I spoke with Rhoda again, on the phone, on September 28, 2022. She mentioned that Leo’s favorite food was her mother’s potato pancakes, and that Leo and her father (Al or Adek) would have a contest to see who could eat the most pancakes. She also said that Leo was her “hero” because he:

  • played the piano very well
  • was great with children
  • knew all kinds of tricks, with his thumbs, word tricks
  • was just fun to be with
  • had “different squeaky voices and all kinds of things that kids like”
  • was also very sweet

“I was young enough that when he wrote down my instructions on what to study, he had to do it in print; I was not yet able to read cursive.”

Rhoda Rivka Hadassah Kocyn Kotzin
b: 5 MAY 1933
  • 5 MAY 1933 - Birth - ; United States
Family Group Sheet - Child
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