I was born in 1956 outside of the smaill town of Bad Toelz, Bayern (Bavaria), (West) Germany. I was the oldest child of four siblings
(two sisters and a brother). I come from a Jewish background. There were five years between me and my oldest sister and nine years
between me and my brother.
My parents were survivors of the Holocaust. They didn't have to suffer going through one of the concentration camps. They were somehow
rescued and hidden when they were adolescents but they didn't tell us children what happened to them. My father lost all of his family
in the concentration camps. The only person that survived the concentration camps on my mother's side was her mother. She lived with us.
Grossmutter Steinmetz pretty well took care of the house and us children. My father didn't do much because he had an alcohol problem.
My mother suffered from what I later learned to be manic depression. She might have had an alcohol problem because my oldest sister
was a little mentally challenged. She might had suffered from fetal alcohol syndrome.
With regards to the Jewish faith, we sort of halfway between Conservative and Orthodox. We were two steps below Ultra-Orthodox (Chassidic).
My father was basically non-practicing. My grandmother was the person who made sure that we lived in a kosher house and we went to
When I was fourteen, my father moved us to the Rheim section of Munich not too far where the international airport was. This helped me with
my education. Instead of following the track to apprenticeship in some factory, I continued in gymnasium (high school) up to grade 13 so that
I could attend university. For the 1973 - 1974, school year, I traveled to the United States as an exchange student. My parents had hoped
that I would be sent to a large city with a huge Jewish population but I was sent to a small rural high school in Northwest Ohio. I was the
only Jewish person in the area. My host family was Christian but they didn't proselytize (try to convert) me. It was really interesting when
at the end of the year they had me take part in the graduation ceremony and they gave me a diploma that said that I had graduated from
high school but I didn't. A lot of times the year away wasn't counted but my year was but I still had one year to go before I took my
Arbitur (final examinations) so that I could attend university.
Instead of staying in the family home while I attended university, I moved into a small apartment in the Olympischen Dorf (Olympic Village).
After the 1972 Summer Olympics, the athletic village had been turned into a residential area. I guess the time in the United States put a
spark in me. I wanted to see if the Messiah in the Christian faith was the same Messiah that we Jews were waiting for, Before Channukah
of 1975, I went out and got a Christian New Testament to read it,