Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Richard Levy, September 20, 2016

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
Toggle Index/Transcript View Switch.
Search this Index
00:00:02 - Family history

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Okay. For official purposes, today is September 20th, 2016.

Segment Synopsis: Dr. Richard Carl Levy, born in Lexington, Kentucky in 1947, discusses family relations and origins. His father is Samuel Meyer Levy, who was born in Knoxville, Tennessee. His mother is Helen Lowitz, who was born in Hamilton, Ohio. His grandfather Jacob ("Jake") was maybe naturalized in Athens, Ohio and was preceded to the U.S. by his father in the 1870s. Fega Glika Levy came to the U.S. in 1907, landing in Baltimore and then to Knoxville where she married Jake Levy. Both of Richard Levy's parents have passed away. Levy had a sister, Charlotte Lois Levy, who passed away in 2006. Richard Levy is married to Beth Stacy Levy (maiden name Barrett), with whom he has three children, Damon, Danielle and Nicole. Damon has two children, Danielle has one child, and Nicole has two children.

Keywords: 1907; 1947; Athens (Ohio); Baltimore (Md.); Beth Stacy Barrett Levy; Charlotte Lois Levy; Damon Barrett Levy; Danielle Barrett Levy; Fega Glika Levy; Hamilton (Ohio); Helen Lowitz; Jacob "Jake" Levy; Knoxville (Tenn.); Lexington (Ky.); New York City (N.Y.); Nicole Barrett Levy; Richard Carl Levy; Samuel Meyer Levy; United States of America

Subjects: Emigration and immigration.; Families.; Family histories.; Genealogy; Immigrants; Jewish families.

GPS: Knoxville (Tenn.)
Map Coordinates: 35.9606, -83.9207
00:06:03 - Settling in Irvine, Kentucky

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Okay. I know that you're presently living in Cincinnati, but you once lived in Kentucky. Where in Kentucky did you live, and when did you live there?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy was born in Lexington, Kentucky but his family was living in Irvine, Kentucky at the time of his birth in 1947. When he was six years old, his family moved to Lexington, Kentucky for four years before moving back to Irvine, Kentucky where they remained until Richard was 17 years old and left for college at the University of Kentucky. Richard Levy is presently living in Cincinnati, Ohio. Levy's grandparents, Jacob Levy and Fega Glika Levy, moved to Lexington, Kentucky because a lot of their family from Lithuania were living in Lexington. However, before his grandparents moved to Lexington they were living in a small town outside of Knoxville, Tennessee called Tellico Plains. His father worked for IBM for a period of time in Cincinnati but otherwise always lived in Kentucky.

Keywords: Cincinnati (Ohio); Helen Lowitz; Jacob "Jake" Levy; Pusalotas (Lithuania); Pushelot (Lithuania); Sam Levy; Tellico Plains (Tenn.); University of Kentucky; Winchester (Ky.)

Subjects: Families.; Family histories.; Genealogy; Irvine (Ky.); Jewish families.; Lexington (Ky.)

GPS: Pushelot (Lithuania)
Map Coordinates: 55.9306, 24.239
00:08:52 - The Right Way Store

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What were the occupations of your parents?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy’s father, Samuel Levy was a merchant, who ran a dry goods store in Irvine, Kentucky called the Right Way Store. Richard’s mother, Helen Lowitz Levy, was a clerk in the dry goods store. The Right Way Store was on Main Street in downtown Irvine. Levy’s grandparents also owned a store down the street from the Right Way Store that sold men and women’s seasonal ready-to-wear clothing. Goods were purchased from Ades wholesalers in Lexington and wholesale shows in Louisville and Cincinnati. Richard and his sister Charlotte Levy both helped out at their father’s store, Charlotte as a salesperson and Richard with inventory and stocking. His mother Helen was a superb saleswoman. He tells a story about his parents discussing customers in Yiddish. His father also had a store in Lexington for a while at Third Street and Deweese, an area that sold to poor people and to African Americans.

Keywords: Ades store; African Americans; Charlotte Levy; Helen Lowitz; Jacob Levy; Main Street, Irvine (Ky.); Ready-to-wear clothing; Right Way Store; Samuel Levy; Yiddish

Subjects: Entrepreneurship; Families.; Irvine (Ky.); Jewish businesspeople; Jewish children; Jewish families.; Lexington (Ky.).; Small business--Kentucky; Small business--Ownership

00:16:20 - Judaism at home

Play segment

Partial Transcript: How would you describe your parents' relationship to Judaism?

Segment Synopsis: Levy discusses the role Judaism played throughout his childhood, including its role in his parents' lives. He believes that both of his parents viewed themselves as Jews before they were Americans, although they were very supportive and happy with being in America. His father, Samuel Meyer Levy, was raised, as Richard describes it, as a "somewhat observant Jew." Both Samuel Levy and Helen Lowitz kept kosher, would walk to synagogue on the high holidays and observed all the holidays. Richard Levy explains that his mother adopted the practices of quasi-Orthodox Judaism but had grown up less observant because of family circumstances. Examples of quasi-Orthodox practices included that his father would not wear a yarmulke during the day. In addition, Samuel Meyer Levy would keep his store open on Saturdays because that is when most of his business would occur. However, the family did keep kosher. They had four sets of dishes, milchigs, and fleishigs, and a separate two sets for Passover. They bought kosher meat from Louisville or Cincinnati despite how hard that was to do. The family were members of Ohavay Zion Synagogue, and Helen Lowitz was once head of Hadassah. Richard Levy also discusses how his parents met and became a couple.

Keywords: Cincinnati (Ohio); Hadassah; Helen Lowitz; High holidays (Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur); Jacob Levy; Jewish marriage; Jewish practices; Kosher; Ohavay Zion Synagogue; Passover (also Pesach); Quasi-Orthodox Judaism; Samuel Meyer Levy; Synagogues; Yarmulke; Yiddish

Subjects: Childhood; Entrepreneurship; Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Jewish businesspeople; Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jews--Identity.; Lexington (Ky.).; Louisville (Ky.); Religion; Small business--Kentucky; Small business--Ownership; Worship (Judaism)

GPS: Ohavay Zion Synagogue
Map Coordinates: 38.2557, -85.751
00:23:17 - Gender roles in Judaism

Play segment

Partial Transcript: When you were growing up, your grandmother was still alive and very active in the, in the synagogue. What do you remember about her participation?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy discusses the views of his family about the Jewish congregation. His grandmother and his mother viewed her role as a Jewish woman as a more restricted role than Jewish men. The women would make sure that the food was prepared, that the children were where they were supposed to be, and that costumes for productions were made. In addition, men and women sat on different sides of the synagogue during services. The women would sit on the left-hand side of the synagogue during services and would be "quietly yapping the whole service in English." Meanwhile, the men would sit on the right-hand side of the synagogue doing davening in Hebrew. Many of the men would even try to do their davening as fast as possible as part of a game.

Keywords: Community; Davening; Faith; Gender in Judaism; Hebrew; High holidays (Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur); Ideology; Jewish women; Judaism; Maxwell Street, Lexington (Ky.); Ohavay Zion Synagogue, Lexington (Ky.); Secular; Shul; Sunday school; Synagogues; Torah (scroll)

Subjects: Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Jewish families.; Jewish women--Kentucky--Lexington; Judaism.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

00:28:49 - Bar mitzvah

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Who were you in Hebrew school with?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy begins by discussing who his peers were at Ohavay Zion Synagogue in Hebrew School, such as Mark Rosenburg, David Shraburg and Simone Bloomfield. Levy had his bar mitzvah at the Ohavay Zion Synagogue in Lexington, Kentucky. He reflects on memories of his bar mitzvah, such as being worried about not being able to make it to the synagogue because of a snow storm and how all of the women in the family pitched in to cook for the occasion. He discusses how he studied for his bar mitzvah. His sister, Charlotte Levy, although having a natural tongue for Hebrew, was not allowed to have a bat mitzvah at the time because it was the women’s role to support the men of the congregation, and to have and raise children, not to be an active, religious part of the community. Levy also discusses his dual childhood as a rural boy in Irvine and a more open Jewish life in Lexington, slightly an outsider in both communities.

Keywords: Bar mitzvahs; Charlotte Levy; David Shraburg; Gender norms; Hebrew schools; Jewish; Jewish life; Jewish women; Jews; Mark Rosenberg; Ohavay Zion Synagogue, Lexington (Ky.); Second generation; Secular; Simone Bloomfield; Women in Judaism

Subjects: Holidays.; Irvine (Ky.); Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jewish women--Kentucky--Lexington; Jews--Identity.; Judaism; Lexington (Ky.).; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

00:35:07 - The Kimball House

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Do you remember the Kimball House?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy and Janice Crane (the interviewer) both reflect on their memories of the Kimball House. Levy describes the Kimball House as a 'runt of a hotel' that many observant Jews stayed at during the high holidays so that they could walk to the synagogue. Sam Levy, among other Jews in the community, would walk far distances to shul, even from Chevy Chase. Crane recalls Levy convincing her to get next to the monkey cage at the Kimball House and the daddy monkey, named George, ruined her new dress.

Keywords: Chevy Chase; Helen Lowitz; High holidays (Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur); Kimball House; Orthodox customs; Sam Levy; Synagogues

Subjects: Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jews--Identity.; Jews--Kentucky--Lexington.; Judaism.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

GPS: The Kimball House
Map Coordinates: 38.04365, -84.50114
00:38:12 - Irvine High School and football

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Um, you mentioned--I know that you played football in high school. Um, where did you go to high school?

Segment Synopsis: Levy discusses his time at Irvine High School from 1961-64, where he played football. However, he only completed three years of high school and never graduated because he got into trouble with the school and had also outgrown it intellectually. Therefore, he went to summer school at the University of Kentucky. Levy's father, Samuel Levy, knew someone in admissions at the University of Kentucky who told him that if Richard could get 3 A's in summer school, he could stay and enroll at the University of Kentucky full time. While he was in high school, Levy's parents still let him play football on Friday nights even though it was Shabbat, as part of his overall "American experience." In addition, they let him play because his sister, Charlotte Lois Levy, was a cheerleader for the team and therefore also had a commitment to participate on Friday nights. Because Richard Levy could not play football during the Jewish high holidays, his coach would tease him and try to convince him to skip services for his football games.

Keywords: 1961-1964; American experiences; Charlotte Lois Levy; Cheerleaders; Cultural acceptance; Discrimination; Football; High holidays (Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur); Irvine High School; Jewish religion; Judaism; Shabbat (also Shabbos, Sabbath); Sports; Summer school; University of Kentucky

Subjects: Education; Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Football players.; Football.; Holidays.; Irvine (Ky.); Jewish children; Jewish families.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

GPS: Irvine High School in Irvine, Kentucky
Map Coordinates: 37.7356, -83.989
00:42:11 - Religious tolerance in Irvine

Play segment

Partial Transcript: In an interview with your parents that was recorded in 1986--I listened to it, and your dad said that he chose moving to Irvine because it was a good town, and there was no anti-Semitism there. How would you describe growing up Jewish in Irvine, Kentucky? And did you experience any anti-Semitism?

Segment Synopsis: Levy discusses the antisemitism (or lack thereof) in his community. He notes that Irvine, Kentucky was a very Baptist community where some people viewed Jews as "Christ killers," but he generally experienced the community as religiously tolerant. Occasionally, country people would call the family's store, the Right Way Store, a "Jew store." Richard Levy does not take offense at this, understanding it as people's way to describe the "foreign-like people who owned it." He didn't personally directly experience any anti-Semitism.

Keywords: "Jew store"; Antisemitism; Baptist religion; Jewish; Judaism; Religious tolerance; Right Way Store; Sam Levy

Subjects: Anti-Semitism; Antisemitism; Discrimination.; Entrepreneurship; Irvine (Ky.); Jewish businesspeople; Jews--Identity.; Jews--Kentucky--Irvine.; Small business--Kentucky; Small business--Ownership

GPS: Irvine (Ky.)
Map Coordinates: 37.7006, -83.9738
00:45:04 - Connections to Judaism / Jewish community

Play segment

Partial Transcript: How were you connected with the larger Jewish community in Lexington? I sort of know from the synagogue and I guess socially you were connected, you had family, but what about Louisville and Cincinnati?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy reflects on traveling to Cincinnati or Louisville every two months or so growing up to visit family, but more importantly to buy kosher products. They would go to a Jewish butcher, a baker, and a candlestick maker because otherwise those products had to be shipped to them in Irvine, Kentucky. Richard Levy also attended youth group during high school and one summer to Camp Livingston when he was younger. Levy also discusses how Jewish values have affected his adult life, such as marrying a Jewish woman, Beth Levy, and having three children. He learned a deep set of values, more urbane and valuing education from his interactions with Lexington's Jewish community.

Keywords: Beth Levy; Camp Livingston; Cincinnati (Ohio); Jewish values; Kashrut (see also Kosher food); Louisville (Ky.); Youth groups

Subjects: Irvine (Ky.); Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

GPS: Camp Livingston
Map Coordinates: 38.8497, -85.1127
00:48:54 - Bandage rolling parties

Play segment

Partial Transcript: In order to further document some of Central Kentucky's Jewish history, can you explain any family relationships that your immediate family had with other members of the Jewish community?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy begins this section by explaining that his family had a relatively small set of Jewish friends in Lexington, Kentucky while he was growing up because the congregation at the time was also relatively small. He names his cousins in relation to one another. He notes that his mother, Helen Lowitz, had about a dozen Jewish friends who lived in Lexington and he remembers her inviting them over to play cards at their house. After the Korean War, his mother and her friends would have bandage rolling parties. The women would frequently get together to roll gauze into a sealed package that they would send off to a military institution in order to help with the war effort. Becky Silverman of Winchester, Kentucky and Reuven Levy are both first cousins of Richard Levy.

Keywords: Bandage rolling; Bandage rolling party; Becky Silverman; Central Kentucky; Cousins; Helen Lowitz; Jewish history; Reuven Levy; Sam Levy; War effort; Winchester (Ky.)

Subjects: Families.; Family histories.; Jewish families.; Jewish women--Kentucky--Lexington; Korean War, 1950-1953; Lexington (Ky.).

00:52:33 - Jewish life and ritual / Charlotte Levy

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What is your most vivid memory of Jewish life and ritual growing up?

Segment Synopsis: Levy reflects on his memories of Passover Seders and staying on McDowell Road in Lexington during the Jewish high holidays of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur so the family could walk to shul. He remembers how peculiar it was to perform Jewish rituals in Irvine, Kentucky, where nobody outside of his family would have any idea what the ancient rituals meant or symbolized. Levy also reflects on his sister, Charlotte Levy, whom he admired greatly. Charlotte embraced Judaism and might have become a rabbi if women had been allowed to then. She was an attorney, a linguist, a law librarian, and had several postgraduate degrees.

Keywords: Charlotte Levy; Davening; Gender; Hebrew; High holidays (Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur); McDowell Road; Passover (also Pesach); Rosh Hashana; Samuel Levy; Seder; Shul; Yom Kippur

Subjects: Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Irvine (Ky.); Jewish families.; Jewish women--Kentucky--Lexington; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Lexington (Ky.).; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

00:56:49 - The University of Kentucky

Play segment

Partial Transcript: I know that you attended the University of Kentucky. We already know how you got there. Um, what years were you there again?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy attended the University of Kentucky from 1965 to 1969. He began his college career in a similar fashion to many students today, not knowing what path he wanted to follow. However, in Irvine, Kentucky the most honorable thing you could do was to be a doctor. Therefore, Levy declared a major in chemistry so that he could eventually enroll in medical school. Getting into medical school at that time was very competitive, so Levy spent a lot of time studying to get good grades and was involved in a lot of undergraduate activities to boost his chances, as well as dating and parties.

Keywords: 1965-1969; Chemistry; College life; Dating; Medical school; Social life

Subjects: Education, Higher; Higher education; Irvine (Ky.); University of Kentucky

01:00:15 - Zeta Beta Tau and Hillel at UK

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Um, specifically related to Jewish life, uh, there were two things that I can think of. One was, uh, uh, a Jewish fraternity called ZBT [Zeta Beta Tau].

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy was a member of the Jewish fraternity Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT) because the other Greek fraternities at the University of Kentucky, such as Delta Tau Delta and Sigma Chi, would not accept Jews. ZBT at the time had mostly Jewish members, but not exclusively Jews. Levy describes the ZBT house on Rose Lane in Lexington, Kentucky. ZBT roommates of Levy include Rick Begun from New Rochelle, New York, Artie Salomon, and an African-American boarder. ZBT was mostly secular with no observance of Judaism, with most brothers secular Northeastern Jews, and even had a president who was not Jewish one of Levy's years there. Richard Levy was also a member of Hillel and was president of the organization his junior year of college. Hillel focused on social activities, discussions, and meals.

Keywords: African Americans; Artie Salomon; Delta Tau Delta; Greek life (fraternities, sororities); Hillel; Jewish fraternities; Jews; Kentucky; New Rochelle (N.Y.); Rick Begun; Rose Lane; Sigma Chi; Social life; University of Kentucky; Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT)

Subjects: Anti-Semitism; Antisemitism; College students--Religious life; Discrimination.; Education, Higher; Higher education; Jews--Identity.; Lexington (Ky.).; Religion; University of Kentucky; Worship (Judaism)

01:07:40 - Judaism during college years

Play segment

Partial Transcript: How did the time that you spent at UK impact your Jewish identity?

Segment Synopsis: Levy states that he does not think that college had much of an impact on his Jewish identity. Rather, his Jewish identity was formed at home and in his congregation, Ohavay Zion. When he attended the University of Kentucky, he says that his Jewish identity was put on hold. Other than being a member in Hillel and the Zeta Beta Tau fraternity, Richard Levy did not have a deeply religious college experience. He would visit Irvine, Kentucky for Passover and visit his grandmother, who lived on McDowell road. When Levy visited his grandmother, the two would speak the remnants of Yiddish that Richard could still remember. However, Richard Levy believes that he had an ordinary college experience. Levy notes that the highlight of his time at the University of Kentucky was the basketball team. He would listen to the radio announcer Cawood Ledford during every game.

Keywords: Cawood Ledford; Hillel; McDowell Street; Ohavay Zion Synagogue, Lexington (Ky.); Passover (also Pesach); Yiddish; Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT)

Subjects: College students--Religious life; Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Irvine, Kentucky; Jews--Identity.; Judaism; Judaism.; Lexington, Kentucky; Religion; University of Kentucky; Worship (Judaism)

GPS: Ohavay Zion Synagogue
Map Coordinates: 37.999, -84.4718
01:11:11 - Medical school at the University of Louisville / Harvard University / Emergency medicine

Play segment

Partial Transcript: I know you're a physician so where did you go to medical school and what years were--was that?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy attended medical school at the University of Louisville from 1969-1973. He got a Masters in Public Health from Harvard University in Boston, Massachusetts. While at Harvard, Levy practiced medicine part-time at Mass General Hospital. This sparked his interest in health care as a system. He then moved to the University of Cincinnati and the Cincinnati General Hospital which pioneered emergency medicine. In response to the race riots in the late 1960s in Cincinnati, the old General Hospital attached to the University of Cincinnati agreed to improve its emergency room and train doctors in emergency medicine. Levy started to write about his experiences and became the administrator of that program.

Keywords: Boston (Mass.); Emergency medicine; General Hospital, Cincinnati (Ohio); George Schmitt; Mass General Hospital; Medical schools; Race riots

Subjects: Cincinnati (Ohio); Education, Higher; Harvard University; Higher education; Louisville (Ky.); Medical care; Medical centers--Administration; Physicians; University of Louisville

GPS: Cininnati Mass General Hospital
Map Coordinates: 39.3237, -84.5077
01:16:05 - The Greater Louisville Organization for Health

Play segment

Partial Transcript: The other thing is that, that in medical school this was in the period of time where, you know, it was peace, with--and I'm showing you the peace sign right now, and where it was anti-war, and I became involved in the anti-war movement.

Segment Synopsis: In 1969, Richard Levy founded a student-run health center called the Greater Louisville Organization for Health (GLOH) in order to provide primary care to poor people. He explains that he founded the organization at a time when there was a huge anti-war movement because of the Vietnam War. At the time that the Greater Louisville Organization for Health was created, poor people had very limited access to healthcare. Medicaid was just being rolled out and there was still enough social and racial bias that most doctors did not want to participate. Through GLOH, medical students provided medical care. The GLOH existed until 2011.

Keywords: 1969; Anti war movement; Anti-war movement; Greater Louisville Organization for Health (GLOH); Medicaid; Racial bias; Racism; Social bias; University of Cincinnati; University of Louisville

Subjects: Louisville (Ky.); Medical care; Physicians--Kentucky; Poor--Medical care; Poverty; Vietnam War, 1961-1975

01:20:09 - The University of Louisville

Play segment

Partial Transcript: How did you choose, uh, University of Louisville for med school?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy chose to attend the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky over the University of Kentucky for medical school. Levy made this decision because he received in-state tuition so it was more affordable for his father Sam Levy who had agreed to pay for it. The University of Kentucky medical school was just getting started at the time.The medical school at the University of Louisville was downtown, four miles from the rest of campus, so it was fairly isolated from campus life. Also, because medical school was so competitive, Levy needed to study a lot. Levy joined a Jewish-like fraternity while at the University of Louisville, but could not remember the name of it. He recalls that the Jewish fraternity was indistinguishable from the 2-3 medical fraternities because it was not very observant of Jewish practices. He dated Jewish girls but didn't actively practice Judaism during medical school.

Keywords: Greek life (fraternities, sororities); Jewish fraternity; Jews; Medical fraternity; Medical schools; Sam Levy; Social life

Subjects: College students--Religious life; Education, Higher; Higher education; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Lexington (Ky.); Louisville (Ky.); University of Kentucky; University of Louisville

GPS: The University of Louisville
Map Coordinates: 38.212, -85.757
01:24:51 - Business ventures

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Tell me about the rest of your business ventures.

Segment Synopsis: Levy discusses his ventures in commerce post-college. When in Washington, D.C. twenty-five years ago, Richard Levy met up with his cousin, Marcia Silverman, who was from Winchester, Kentucky and had attended the University of Pennsylvania. Her parents had owned a shmata store, where they sold dry goods. Silverman went on to become the head of one of the largest advertising agencies in the United States, so Levy asked her how she ended up doing so well. After listening to Marcia's advice, even while in medicine, Levy got involved in several business ventures such as a software company, a wire carrier, a water redistribution supply company, a billing company, and a company that made cabinetry for courthouses all over America. Levy describes his strategy as, "looking for things that had potential value, and putting some money in them, and trying to find some good people who would work on them, and, and then kibitzing." Levy is driven by wanting to live an interesting life, with time to explore various options including the "shmata business" (commerce).

Keywords: Businesses; Marcia Silverman; Shmata store; University of Pennsylvania; Washington, D.C.; Winchester (Ky.)

Subjects: Entrepreneurship; Jewish businesspeople; Jewish families.; Small business--Kentucky; Small business--Ownership; Washington (D.C.)

GPS: Washington (D.C.)
Map Coordinates: 38.907, -77.037
01:28:49 - Being a professor at the University of Cincinnati

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What, um--as a professor, tell me what you did as, as a professor at UC?

Segment Synopsis: Richard Levy has taught medical students and residents at the University of Cincinnati since 1984. He was the founding chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Cincinnati. Levy did several kinds of research, such as animal and drug testing. In addition, Richard Levy also practiced medicine, seeing patients mostly in the emergency room.

Keywords: Emergency medicine; Professors

Subjects: Cincinnati (Ohio); Education, Higher; Higher education; Physicians; University of Cincinnati

GPS: The University of Cincinnati
Map Coordinates: 39.1329, -84.515
01:31:10 - Passing on Jewish values

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Okay, so somewhere in all of that you and Beth have raised some children. Um, so what was Judaism like in your home, and how was it different from that as your parents?

Segment Synopsis: Levy discusses passing Jewish values and traditions to his children, and what they decided to do with that knowledge. His wife, Beth Levy, grew up in a non-observant Jewish home with a general understanding of Judaism; her brother had been bar mitzvahed but Beth had not. Further showcasing gender roles of the time, after Richard and Beth Levy got married and had children, Beth took on the "main family support role." Richard Levy said that she paid a professional price by taking on that role. The family were members of the reform congregation Wise Temple in Cincinnati, Ohio. As a family, the Levys would light candles on Shabbat and observe Jewish holidays but did not keep kosher. All three of their children are married to non-Jews. Two of them are raising their children to be Jews, including attending a Jewish afternoon school and hiring an Israeli nanny to teach the children Hebrew.

Keywords: Beth Levy; Gender roles; Jewish schools; Kashrut (see also Kosher food); Ohavay Zion Synagogue, Lexington (Ky.); Reform Judaism; Shabbat (also Shabbos, Sabbath); Wise Temple

Subjects: Cincinnati (Ohio); Jewish children; Jewish families.; Jewish women; Jews--Identity.; Judaism.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)

GPS: The Wise Temple in Cincinnati, Ohio
Map Coordinates: 39.213, -84.429
01:36:08 - Judaism in retrospect

Play segment

Partial Transcript: How would you explain how your Jewishness, um, and your practices have changed over time? I mean, clearly they have, but what do you feel like is the reason behind that?

Segment Synopsis: Levy discusses how his relationship with religion has changed over time, and any regrets associated with it. He states, "I was born a Jew, I was married as a Jew, and I'll die as a Jew." Richard Levy believes that Judaism has been a fundamental and important part of his life, though he has moved in and out of Jewish practices across time. When it is convenient, Levy will still celebrate Jewish holidays. The only thing that is more important to Levy than his religion is his family. He ends saying he was lucky being raised as a Jew and learning its value system. Most religions convey how to treat others, the environment, yourself. "I learned a pretty good set of principles that have guided me." Judaism through his parents and Lexington gave Richard the framework to be a good person.

Keywords: Family; Jewish holidays

Subjects: Fasts and feasts--Judaism.; Holidays.; Jewish children; Jewish families.; Judaism.; Religion; Worship (Judaism)