Say Kaddish after me

5 _ SA nochem 1885When Sholem Aleichem’s own father Nochem [pictured with Sholem] died in January 1888, Sholem would fastidiously serve as the custodian of his memory. He chided a brother for not visiting Nochem’s grave enough, practically dictating the terms of his next visit to the cemetery, brusquely offering to pay his travel expenses, even reminding him not to forget his prayer shawl and phylacteries. For all the levity of the Ethical Will it is clear that Sholem took the duty of memorializing and honoring ancestors seriously.