Albie’s Amazing Journey

Alan J. Schwarz
4 min readNov 16, 2020

Izzy Applebaum married Helen Shapiro and they moved to a small town where he set up a general-purpose store. The store was known for a great selection of Cowboy boots and Blue Jeans.

After a couple of years, Izzy expanded the store and he and Helen had a son. They named him after Helen’s dearly departed Dad, Albert.

Izzy brought Albie with him to Synagogue every Saturday. Izzy went to Shul because there were usually just nine other guys and they needed ten for the minyan. There was no Rabbi, so Izzy led the service.

As the years went by, more Jewish families moved into the area, and Izzy redoubled his efforts to make sure the community was vibrant and alive. He was soon made president of Beth Israel and he watched with a sense of tremendous accomplishment as a house was bought for a Rabbi.

When a Rabbi and his wife were recruited from a Yeshiva in New York to lead the community, everyone celebrated. It was a tremendous accomplishment.

The store was doing a booming business and Helen knew everybody who came in to buy anything. Albie helped out after school and loved spending time with his parents. He was a genuinely good kid.

One evening when Helen and Izzy were going over possible Universities that Albie might attend, he surprised them by saying he wanted to go to a Yeshiva. He loved his Judaism and wanted to become a Rabbi.

Izzy wanted to make sure he was making the right decision ‘’Son, we’ll be very proud if you become a Rabbi but why not get a degree that you can fall back on, in case things don’t work out.’’ Albie suggested that it was weird logic, but he signed up for an undergraduate degree in business.

Albie was accepted by the Wharton business school after his second year at the University Of Toronto. When he finished his degree he was awarded the prestigious Diamond Award for being the student with the highest marks in his program.

His parents celebrated his success and asked Albie his plans as he received all kinds of high paying offers for employment from prestigious corporations. ‘’I am going to Israel and I’m going to a Yeshiva to become a certified Rabbi.’’

It was a bit of a shock for Helen and Izzy, but they supported his decision. He…



Alan J. Schwarz

Alan Schwarz loves life. He is the founder of JAMS Productions, a television production company based in Toronto . His passion is writing.