My family moved from Manhattan to the Bronx in 1954. I was raised by my grandparents and we lived in a tenement on Hoe Avenue, near Southern Boulevard. On Saturdays, I would accompany my grandmother, Clara, in trips to the market at Simpson station, serving as translator between her and the meat and produce sellers.
The two schools that I attended were P.S. 75 and P.S. 123. I loved my years at these schools with my favorite teachers, Mrs. Lasher, who taught me English and that you couldn’t use a double negative in a sentence, and Mr. Mathes, who inspired in me an appreciation for science that has always stayed with me.