On Saturday, December 8, members of the Fox family participated in a 57-year family tradition when they lit Chanukah candles on the first night of the holiday at Jewish Hospital Medical Center East in memory of their beloved relative, Hilda (“Hindy”) Fox, head nurse at Jewish Hospital for many years prior to her death of a cerebral hemorrhage on the fourth night of Chanukah, 1956. She was 42 years old.
One of 14 siblings, Hilda never married and, according to family members, the hospital was her life. In addition to her other responsibilities, she took it upon herself to erect a menorah and light Chanukah candles each year for patients and visitors to Jewish Hospital during the holiday.
After her death, the family purchased a simple wooden menorah and for over five decades, different family members came to the hospital each night of the holiday to light the candles in her memory. Thirteen years ago, Jewish Hospital commissioned Louisville artists Julius Friedman and Mark Fowler to design a new menorah, which the family now uses to light candles each night at Jewish Hospital Medical Center East.
Last year was especially difficult for the family since Bernard “Bensie” Fox, patriarch of the family and the last of Hilda’s 14 siblings, passed away in September 2011. Now the children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great grandchildren of the family will be carrying on their Chanukah tradition in perpetuity.