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Lest It Be Forgotten After I Am Gone: The Steady Years - 2

...On another cruise, this time around the Greek Islands, we found ourselves to be fellow passengers with the then Archbishop of Canterbury with his personal envoy, Terry Waite...

Raymon Benedyk continues his life story.

For the first time in many years Elsa and I were able to enjoy a lifestyle we had not done for a long time. This included some exotic overseas travel, which was something we really took delight in, visiting places we had only been able to dream about in the past. Many glorious memories, along with some magnificent scrapbooks of mementos and photographs that Elsa always excelled in preparing were the result.

On one of our first cruises, Elsa's verve and vitality was as usual noticed, which had us both being honoured by being invited to a meal at the Captain's Table with several other VIP guests. On another cruise, this time around the Greek Islands, we found ourselves to be fellow passengers with the then Archbishop of Canterbury with his personal envoy, Terry Waite, who was travelling as a lecturer on the ship, whose subject was the ancient city of Troy and the excavations there. This was of course before his terrible experiences as a hostage in Lebanon.

In 1976 Stephen, who seemed to be making a career in banking, suddenly informed us that he was giving it up and going to tour America, buying a car there to travel around in and, if necessary, even sleeping in it on his journeying. This seemed to us at first somewhat short-sighted and irresponsible. However, when I recalled that this was something akin to what I had done myself some 30 years earlier, I became secretly very jealous of what he was going to experience. Elsa and I were also introduced to a young lady who had agreed to accompany him, which pleased us in that I knew how depressing lone travel could be.

Elsa was by now becoming more and more very involved with B'nai B'rith nationally, being elected to serve on the Executive Council of B'nai B'rith in England where, because of her experience working with young people,
she was expected to circulate throughout the country making speeches about B'nai B'rith to groups of young people to interest them in the movement, acting as Installing Officer at many Installation meetings, a task she carried out with charm and dignity dozens of times over the years, as well as keeping up the morale of groups that were for one reason or another not doing so well. When her term of office was completed, she was honoured with the title of Honorary National Life Vice President of B'nai B'rith, UK, a status that of course she retained until her death in 2001.


If you wish to make a donation to the Elsa Benedyk Memorial Fund, set up by her friends and colleagues entirely without Raymon’s knowledge to provide funds to support the children's ward of the Shaare Zedek Hospital in Jerusalem to commemorate her life of work with children in her nursery schools, it would be most gratefully received. The amount that you give will not be revealed to Raymon. He is not a trustee of the fund. Your cheque, payable to the Fund, should be sent to the fund's Treasurer Mrs I Dokelman, 14 Charville Court, 30/32 Gayton Road, Harrow, Middx HA1 2HT.


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