Reflections.

My story has ended with The Golden Years topic; it is time for me to pick up all the loose ends and pieces that were left out from my web site. I have to talk about my personal losses of some of our relatives and friends, and introduce the ones we still have.

The Past and the Present

Alessandro Padroni with his mother, Theodora Padroni (daughter of my Uncle Alexander Metz), and her brother Alexander Metz, with wife Maria (Grubhoffer) in Rome, 1959.

Alessandro Padroni with his mother, Theodora Padroni (daughter of my Uncle Alexander Metz), and her brother Alexander Metz, with wife Maria (Grubhoffer) in Rome, 1959.

Alessandro and Angela

Alessandro and wife Angela around 1980 in their home in Rome

All these relatives on my Father's side of the family had died, Alessandro in 1983, and dear Angela in 2001. Their only child and son, Rudy had died in October of 1999. I have no record of the others.

I'm still corresponding occasionally with my relatives in Austria, but not had a chance to meet them.

Alma (second cousin on my Father side) with her son, Heribert, Villach, Austria, 2004

Alma, second cousin on my father side (1922 - December 25 2009), with her son, Heribert, Villach, Austria, 2004

Helene, Helga and Gerhard

I recently received these pictures from my other Austrian relatives: Helene, who is the first cousin of Alma, and her son Gerhard with wife Helga. The pictures were taken in 2007 in Villach, Austria.

During my visit to Hungary in 2004 I had visited Ildi, my second cousin on my mother side, whom I had not seen over 50 years. Since then we have become very close friends through frequent correspondence, and sharing our happiness and the troubles of our lives.

Ildi, a proud grandma of two little boys, and her husband, Laszlo, retired research scientist, Budapest, 2007.

Ildi, a proud grandma of two little boys, and her husband, Laszlo, retired research scientist, Budapest, 2007.

The most shocking news came to us few days ago that while battling with lingering health issues Ildi suddenly passed away on July 27, 2012. Her whole life and activities were dedicated to the well-being of her family and she leaves a heartbreakingly huge empty space behind her. I also will miss her tremendously, she became my very close friend and confidante through our 400 or so emails during the last decade.

In September of 1998 I received a very sad phone call informing me that my Godmother, Mady had passed away. She had been a good friend of my Parents and a "Fairy" Godmother to me, who had been living in her "magic" world and inner circles. She was kind-hearted and caring and we kept in touch up to her last months of life. She was 97, but forever young.

Mady on her 80th Birthday, Hollywood, CA, 1981

Mady on her 80th Birthday, Hollywood, CA, 1981

There was a period in my life when my job and studies had left me with very little time to socialize. This routine had been such a burden that I had to take a break and visit my closest friends, Kari and Maria. Most of the weekends their home was full with fun and laughter from visiting relatives and friends they had been entertaining. Oh, how I miss this group of beautiful people now; one-by-one over the years they had left this world and me with only the memories of their loveliness.

I'm dedicating this picture to my dear friend, Maria, who passed away in Camarillo a week after I had lost Len. Her remains were buried next to Kari in the Conejo Mountain Cemetery just a day before our funeral.

Among my Hungarian friends in the mid-70s, Maria is standing next to me on the end. Camarillo, CA

Among my Hungarian friends in the mid-70s, Maria is standing next to me on the end. Camarillo, CA

Margit and Gyuri

Rezso and I had met Gyuri in the early 1940s in Klotildliget, when we were sitting on the top of our gate at the front of our villa and Gyuri and his little brother, Ocsi were strolling down our street wearing identical brown pilot caps and long winter coats. I do not remember the exact details of the encounter, except that my brother was not very nice to them in the first few minutes of our meeting. That was the beginning of our beautiful friendship that has given me the wonderful childhood memories of the stormy growing-up years; and, later-on of the few short days that I was able to spend with Gyuri and wife Margit in their lovely home. Up to these days our frequent phone calls and correspondence mean a lot to me.
This is the picture of Margit and Gyuri on their 50th Wedding Anniversary in Chevharaszt, September 2006.

I just got the very shocking and very sad news from Zsuzsa, Gyuri's sister that today, November 10, 2013 my dearest childhood friend has suddenly passed away. I'm heartbroken and weepy and already feeling terrible empty without him. He was always there for me with his love and caring from my early childhood. He was a truly good man and a true and unselfish friend with a golden heart. Isten veled Gyuri, your memory will be with me until my last day.

Gyuri

Köszönöm

Marika and Laci

I am also including here one of my favored pictures of Marika and Laci, my dear friends from my youth, who proved that true friendship lasts for a lifetime. I met Marika while attending Junior High School in Klotildliget and we had lots of fun together as teenagers. Lajos and I ran into them at the refugee camp in Salzburg in 1956 where they were just newlyweds. You can read more about this in the Turning Point chapter. They also immigrated to California and we kept close contact throughout the years.

This picture was taken on their 50th wedding anniversary in December 2006, when their children and grandchildren organized a surprise party for them in a restaurant at Fremont, California.

There is a need here to show our family heritage, inherited from father to son and from son all the way to grandchild: the Hungarian Order of the Valiant (Vitez).

The Hungarian Vitéz Order (English site)

The Hungarian Vitéz Order (Hungarian site)

My Father, Rudolf Ritter Metz von Spondalunga during the ceremony of receiving the Vitez Order in 1929. Standing beside him is Gyula Gombos von Jakfai

My Father, Rudolf Ritter Metz von Spondalunga during the ceremony of receiving the Vitez Order in 1929. Standing beside him is Gyula Gombos von Jakfai.

After the Second World War the Communist Government of Hungary had disbanded the Order until the change of the government in 1992.

My brother, Rezso during the Vitez Order Ceremony in the Dom Church in Szeged, September 10, 1994

My brother, Rezso during the Vitez Order Ceremony in the Dom Church in Szeged, September 10, 1994.

Rezso with his 17 years old grandson, Rudolf (Rudi) Metz after the ceremony of receiving the Vitez Order in the Inner-city Church in Budapest, September 15, 2007

Rezso with his 17 years old grandson, Rudolf (Rudi) Metz after the ceremony of receiving the Vitez Order in the Inner-city Church in Budapest, September 15, 2007.

I owe a debt of gratitude and many thanks to my brother, Rezso who has spent a considerable time and energy during the years collecting pictures and facts of our Father and of the family history. For, being an emigrant, I had left everything behind; and without his help and suggestions this site could not be completed. He had been a tireless researcher visiting and corresponding with Libraries and Museums, way before the time that I had the idea to do this web site.

On one of his research tour Rezso, Edit and kis Rezso with wife Eva had traveled to Poland to look up the site of the height of Pustki where our Father had been given a mission - the Gorlice-Tarnow offensive in May 1915. For the successful mission he received the Knight's Cross of the Military Order of Maria Theresia on the 10th of March, 1921.

The graves of the fallen Hungarian soldiers at the Luzna-Pustki cemetery

The graves of the fallen Hungarian soldiers at the Luzna-Pustki cemetery.

The Memorial of the Hungarian Heroes in the cemetery

The Memorial of the Hungarian Heroes in the cemetery.

Rezso also assisted a group of people in introducing my Father into Wikipedia. The Hungarian Wikipedia page is available here.

Rezso and Edit's 50th Anniversary, Klotildliget, April 7. 2008.

Rezso and Edit's 50th Anniversary, Klotildliget, April 7. 2008.

Very recently I was invited to attend the event of my Brother's Golden Wedding Anniversary. In the same church in Klotildliget where they had married, Edit and Rezso renewed their vows, and afterwards they celebrated with a dinner among their family in a fancy restaurant. Of course I could not go, as much as I wanted to. My life has been turned around in the last few years but mostly my recent loss has taken a toll on me. Even so, I have good faith in recovering my strength to cope with my new life and, later on, to travel again. My purse is getting heavy with happiness and sorrow, but I just have to take a firm grip on it and get on with my life for a little longer.

Back of the line

Oh, I better get back to the end of the line yet ......

This picture was taken in the Hadtorteneti Intezet and Muzeum in Budapest at the front of my Father's portrait on Rezso's 81 birthday on April 3, 2014.

Rezso at 81

The Future

With this web site I have endeavored to be honest and open, I have to some extent "bared my soul". I have done so deliberately, not because my story is unusual but because I am just one of many to have experienced a life like this. So many of us hide the unpleasant, the unnatural, the unbecoming, but it is only by telling our stories that others may learn from them. I spent many hard years bringing up my Family, and it is their generation who now have a controlling influence. I hope that I have taught them successfully. The next generation, my grandchildren, are the ones with whom the future lies and so I have included pictures of them at an early age; their minds, as yet, free and open - in them is The Future.

Click on a thumbnail to see a larger picture in a new window then close that window to return here.

Before I sign off I would like to express my special thanks and gratitude to my web author who was all the way behind me with his ideas and encouragement beside his technical expertise and knowledge. Without his kind assistance and superb editorial directions my story would not have come to completion.

  1. Home Page
  2. My Parents and our Family
  3. The Lean Years after World War II
  4. The Turning Point and Escape
  5. My new Family in a new Country
  6. Our New Life
  7. Visits and Achievements
  8. My Second Marriage
  9. Travels and Changes
  10. The Golden Years
  11. Reflections

Copyright © 2014 Jutka

Should you wish to contact me please do so by clicking HERE

Valid CSS! Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict