Monday, March 31, 2008

Dear Paula -

Thank you for emailing us the news of Paul Bonart's passing. He and Bertha were was indeed like uncle and aunt to us. Paul played music with us in Rochester NY, giving me my first experience of playing in trios and quartets. He was there to chide and encourage me when I was terrified of violin recitals:"Whether you do well or poorly, Pat, the sun will shine again tomorrow!" These words seemed profound and gave humor to a seemingly dire situation. In the evenings, my grandmother, Ruth Gray Brodt, thundered on the piano, Paul on the violin, and Julie on the cello. Paul and Bertha were our heroes, they had escaped Nazi Germany and lived in Brazil, and cooked wonderful vegetarian meals - especially vegetable stew with dumplings.

Julie and I visited them in Berkeley, in the great hillside house with two great danes. Paul always enjoyed life, and was the master of the chateau. That same trip Julie and I visited Margaret Spence in Bisbee, and loved her right away. We were very glad she was there for Paul later on - they were old friends, and Paul went right on living a long and generous life, always cheering and brilliant and kind to his many friends.

Thank you Paula for contacting the friends and family,

Patricia deGogorza Gahagan

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