Author Archives: Elliot Margolies

George Sid From China

As communism spread like wildfire across the vast land of China, my great grandfather made a decision. As soon as his father passed away he would pack up his family and take them to America. It was hard for  his first son, George, to leave Chung Sar, a small village he had been raised in outside of Hong Kong. Things ... Read More »

The Golden American Dream of (Viet Nam)

On November 1, 1955 the Vietnam War began, the North Vietnamese against the South Vietnamese. It was hard for the people and for the government. Tons of people had to leave. People couldn’t live under these conditions. The north came over to the south and robbed the south. Kim’s family (name changed) left when she was eighteen years old to ... Read More »

True Courage (Poland)

As Atticus Finch said in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, “I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what”.  It was courage like ... Read More »

Civil War Keeps Family Away (Lebanon)

Born on February 28, 1961, Shahe Krakirian began his life in Beirut, Lebanon living in a small apartment in with his whole family. He shared a room with his two younger brothers. Though they sometimes got into verbal arguments, and even occasional physical fights, his younger brothers were two of his closest friends during his childhood. It was not as ... Read More »

Lester Torok (Hungary)

My Grandma was a spoiled brat. When she graduated high school she demanded her father to buy her a fur coat. Lester Torok, my great grandfather- who I unfortunately never had the honor to meet- immigrated from Hungary when he was a young boy. He came with his mother and two siblings. My grandma told me his story to the ... Read More »

Businessman’s Visa Brings New Immigrants (China)

My grandparents soon discovered a unique social network in which they met most of their closest friends – group dancing at Mar Vista park every morning. Waking up early to attend the group dances remained their daily routine throughout the years. Being able to achieve the American dream, the idea of equal opportunity for success among all, is the dream ... Read More »

Looking to the Future (Germany)

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “America is another name for opportunity”. My grandmother, Marianne Kramer, believed this as well. She is a strong woman who came to America for the purpose of opportunity. She was the first person in my entire family to come to America and make a living here. Life for Marianne in Bremen, Germany was pleasant, she ... Read More »

Kimiko – Japanese Hidden Within

  Sirens blaring, fighter planes soaring, and the cries of thousands, this was the everyday life and struggles of Japanese men, women, and children. It was a life filled with bombings, hunger, and loneliness. My grandmother, Kimiko, was just five years old when World War II broke out. It was one filled with terror and misery, a world in which ... Read More »

Hideo Tomoyasu – Japanese American Experience

  Being an American doesn’t mean you’re a citizen, it’s a feeling. It’s faith, believing in your country, supporting it through good and bad, and paying your duty. When you have that, nobody can touch you. I interviewed my mother in order to learn about my grandfather, Hideo Tomoyasu, and his immigration to Hawaii.  My grandfather was born in 1920 ... Read More »

Russian Healer and Hero

  Screaming filled the streets, as communist soldiers pushed down innocent civilians. Above the chaos was a vast dark sky that stretched high over the rolling mountain ranges of Russia. The country was distraught, Tsar Nicholas II had just lost his power and revolutions had begun. Not a single person was safe from the aggressive soldiers of the Communist Party. ... Read More »

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