Hon. Melvin Stanley Barasch
The Honorable Melvin Stanley Barasch, passed away on 5/29/20 in Marlton, New Jersey from complications of COVID-19. He was 91. Mel, the dear son of the departed Morris and Reba and younger brother to admired Burt, was a loving husband for 53 years to Rita, who predeceased him in 2013, a cherished father/father-in-law to Susan (David Carrieri), Patricia (Paul Furtaw) and Abby (Wendy Greenberg) and proud grandpa to Rachel, Emily, Jessica, Cassidy, Matthew and Kieran.
Born and bred in Brooklyn, Mel attended and graduated from Midwood HS and Brooklyn College before receiving a law degree from Cornell University. He served in the US Army during the Korean War and was active in local government and social justice causes while practicing law in private practice in Queens for several decades and then being elected to and serving close to 20 years as a Judge on the Brooklyn State Supreme Court. A big sports enthusiast, Mel especially loved cheering for his beloved Brooklyn Dodgers and NY Mets as well as at his grandkids’ soccer and baseball games and dance and theatrical performances. Known for his friendliness, fairness, quick wit, loving and charming nature, Mel had many admirers and will be greatly missed by family, friends, colleagues and neighbors who all had the honor and privilege of knowing him. Details about the funeral and Shiva as well as information about donations in Mel’s name to worthy organizations, including the NYC Food Bank, ACLU and URJ can be found on the website for Platt Memorial Chapel in Voorhees, NJ.
The following were eulogies given by the family on the day of the funeral:
Homage to Melvin Stanley Barasch 9/7/28-5/29/20 by Susan Amy Barasch
Today we are here to celebrate the life of Melvin Stanley Barasch. Although unprecedented circumstances prevent extended family and friends from being here with us in person, we truly appreciate all who are watching this service from home, either now or later as a recording and all who have expressed their condolences and shared warm memories since my Dad’s passing. I believe that my father would be very pleased that he was important enough to have his funeral “on TV.” My father meant so much to so many people. He was among his many roles and titles, a son, brother, husband, father, father-in-law, grandfather, uncle, cousin, friend, colleague, neighbor, attorney, NY Supreme Court Justice, political and social justice activist, sports fan, jogger, world traveler, beach bum, foodie, corny joke teller, avid reader, fashionista, music enthusiast, theater aficionado and an observant Jew. Mel Barasch was all of these descriptors but he was so much more than just the sum of their individual parts. For as long as I can remember, my father has been larger than life, a man whose words, actions and deeds have been honorable, joyful, kind and loving over the course of his rich, admirable and full life. From the earliest days of my childhood and into my teens, I recall how hard my father worked to provide for his family, often working long hours during the week to build his law practice into the success that it became, never complaining about how isolating or fatiguing it was, but instead more than making up for it to his family when he was home in the evenings, the weekends and on family vacations. And oh how wonderful those vacations were, whether it was spending the summers on Cape Cod, taking day trips to many beaches, going to Disneyworld, Puerto Rico, Williamsburg, the Catskills or making a family pilgrimage to Israel. All were special and memorable in their own right. My father had a great sense of humor. Although his jokes often bordered on corny, he had an impeccable sense of timing and knew how to land a joke with surprise and success. The many funny phrases that he coined have become legendary in my family. Being born in the same year, my Dad felt a special kinship with Mickey Mouse, making our many trips to Disney so much fun, special and memorable. Although he was brought up in a conservative and more traditional Jewish home, my Dad evolved into a very tolerant and open-minded man who was adaptable and open to change. These characteristics in addition to his sense of fairness and belief in opportunity for all, contributed to making him into the successful activist, attorney and judge that he became. I recall how as a teenager, I “clerked” in his law office and was so impressed with how important he was as a lawyer and advocate for his working class clients. As a judge, my father ran a very tight courtroom, running proceedings punctually and efficiently. Although the workings of the courtroom are foreign to me, I have been told by friends and classmates who argued their cases in front of him that he was a very fair and honorable jurist and his rulings were just, leading future lawyers to quote his conclusions in their arguments before the bench. My mother, Rita Gewant Barasch, prided herself on being called “a woman ahead of her time,” but my father has always been light years ahead of other men from his generation in terms of his admiration, appreciation and respect for the women in his life. Never once did my Dad ever make me or my sisters feel that he was disappointed not to have a son. Rather he praised and encouraged us, saying there were no limitations on whatever we aspired to do. And so I grew up believing that I could be a doctor, president, basketball player, singer or all of the above. Although politics, professional sports and music weren’t to become my destiny, (although maybe they should be?) with my Dad’s encouragement and support, I became the first physician in my family. After my graduation from med school, I will never forget how with a big smile on his face, beaming with pride he would refer to me evermore as “my daughter Susan, the doctor.” As impassioned sports fans, some of the greatest memories I have of my Dad are attending and watching sporting events together. Whether it was sitting courtside at the NY Knicks games or going to countless games at Shea stadium to watch our beloved Mets (whom my Dad grew to love as much as his cherished Brooklyn Dodgers) including the pinnacle of every true Mets fans’ existence, being there at the 7th game of the World Series to witness the Miracle Mets complete their unbelievable comeback and win against the Boston Red Sox. I hope Dad that the Mets can and will win another championship someday soon in your memory. The same wonderful qualities that my Dad demonstrated as a father, he proudly infused into becoming an amazing grandfather. Regardless of the particular ages of his grandchildren, he thoroughly enjoyed being “Grandpa” and was able to laugh, play and converse with them at their varying ages and developmental levels. He was an unabashed bragger about his grandchildren and would tout all of their talents and accomplishments, no matter how small, to anyone who would give him the courtesy of listening. “Grandpa Mel” has always been the biggest cheerleader for all of his grandchildren, whether it was theatrical performances, dance recitals and competitions, soccer and baseball games or track meets. No matter what the event, the audience was treated to hearing my Dad’s booming voice, enthusiastically shouting, “Bravo” after each performance, something which we will all greatly miss. As my father aged into his golden years, he never became a bitter, reclusive old man as many of his contemporaries did. He worked until he was no longer able, took care of my mother by himself until her needs became too great, accepted her untimely passing while mourning the loss of her companionship and subsequently accepted the need for his own support and dependence on caretakers and his loving family. Although in the end his memory wasn’t as sharp as it once was and sometimes words failed him, he was still the same person underneath, a very happy, charming and decent man who was always prepared with a corny joke or compliment for others. My Dad has always been a cultured man, whether it was going to Broadway shows, the ballet, museums or concerts or having a delicious dinner at a renowned restaurant. He truly relished the fun and excitement that entertainment and fine wining and dining can provide and loved sharing it with family and friends. He also loved music, especially music from the 70s and so many of my best memories have a soundtrack running along with them from such talented artists as Judy Collins, Peter, Paul and Mary, Joan Baez, Cat Stevens, The Beatles, Carly Simon, James Taylor and Simon and Garfunkel. Although I will greatly miss my father’s presence on this Earth, the memories of the amazing, kind hearted, witty, intelligent, handsome, loving and charming man he was will live on forever in my heart and mind. I will share stories of his greatness with family and friends and hope to live my life according to his shining example. I will think of him often and hope that as he joins my beloved mother up in Heaven that I will be able to feel his gentle spirit “blowing in the wind” and providing me direction like a “bridge over troubled water,” whenever I need him. I love you Dad.
Dad Eulogy by Patricia Barasch, Esq.
Each time I sat down these past few days to attempt to write my dad’s eulogy, I was immediately overwhelmed by the task to the point of paralysis...How do I capture and put into words the truly special, extraordinary man that he was, the profound impact he has had on my life, the precious bond that we shared and how terribly much I miss him already?...how do I honor his life, and the legacy he leaves behind through the indelible impact he has had on so many, many, many lives over the course of the nearly 92 years of his life, ones that were so very well-loved and so very well-lived right up until the very end? And how do I so amid such profound heartbreak, grief and sadness?
My dad was truly a person who welcomed the world with open arms. He embraced the richness of humanity in all its beautiful diversity. As but one personally meaningful example, despite his very traditional Jewish upbringing, he gladly made room in his heart for my Irish-Catholic Red Sox-loving “special friend” (as my mother would say) from the suburbs, so much so that, not only would he overcome his initial skittishness with Paul’s bear hugs, but he would come to love him as his own son as he repeatedly told him most recently.
Melvin Stanley Barasch was a quintessential New Yorker, Brooklyn-born and -bred. When I reflect back on my childhood growing up in our home on Rugby Road in Flatbush, Brooklyn, I am blanketed in the warmth of memories of a loving family life, filled with wonderful adventures, trips, vacations and outings; intimate and large scale celebrations with extended family, wonderful neighbors and very dear friends; laughter and energy; kindness and humor; compassion and passion; intellectual debate; open-mindedness and tolerance; laughter and tears and the full range of human emotions. To this day, my childhood friends still remark on the warmth and love of our family home; how welcomed they felt in our home; my parents’ kindness and acceptance; and the interest my parents showed in all of our friends and their lives.
Then, after successfully launching his three daughters from our family home in Brooklyn, he migrated with Rita, the love of his life to the Upper West Side, where they continued to savor all the Big Apple had to offer, including fine dining, theatre, dance, cinema, music and shopping for the perfect fruit and other tasty delights at the diverse and eclectic neighborhood stores.
To say that my dad was a devoted and loving husband understates the sheer magnitude of his adoration and love for my mother, who claimed him as her own at first sight in the summer of 1959 at a bar in the resort town of Fire Island, NY. Throughout their 53 years of marriage, he so lovingly doted on her in a perfect mixture of old-fashioned romance and modern egalitarian partnership. He was content to follow her lead in directing our family life and their social life, while he took quiet pride in providing for the instrumental needs and wants of four particularly strong-willed women. My mom was the planet around which he orbited, always looking for ways to provide her with joy, happiness, comfort, safety and security. Throughout their life together, he always placed her high upon a pedestal, reveling and boasting to the world about her keen phi beta kappa intellect (always acknowledging she was smarter than him), her fiery independence, unabashed tenaciousness, her pizazz and style, her beauty, her passion and energy and her loving ways. It was truly bittersweet that after her passing, as his short term memory weakened, he so lovingly and dutifully asked for her every day.
In both his home and work life, he was the essence of humility, in direct inverse proportion to his many talents and accomplishments. Not once did he talk down to a person, regardless of their station in life, and strongly abhorred those who did. Throughout his legal and civic career, he continuously championed progressive social causes, especially the rights of the disenfranchised, beginning with helping to organize the New York Automat restaurant workers following his graduation from Cornell Law. He was active in the Independent Democratic Club of Flatbush, even running for Assemblyman with an endorsement from Eleanor Roosevelt, a fact of which he was most proud. He also served his country in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, and then launched a thriving private practice in Woodside Queens serving primarily working-class plaintiffs. As he neared the end of his time in private practice, he then entered civil service upon appointment as Commissioner and then Chairman of the New York State Board of Elections.
And then, for the final chapter of his illustrious career, he was elected to serve on the New York State Supreme Court in Kings County, Brooklyn. He was known for being one of the hardest working justices in Brooklyn, hearing cases in both criminal and civil divisions, and always skillful at finding common ground between adversaries through the trust and respect he earned from lawyers who came into his courtroom by virtue of his keen legal acumen and overall fair-mindedness. His love of the law was palpable throughout his career, but particularly evident during this final chapter. Serving as a Judge was a particularly fitting end to his legal career as he embodied all of the critical qualities of a Jurist – patience, open-mindedness, courtesy, courage, punctuality, firmness, understanding, compassion, humility, common sense, wisdom and integrity. One of his most widely anticipated decisions came at the end of his time on the bench when he issued a ruling in a long-standing and highly contested case involving the Hassidic Satmar sect in Brooklyn. One of the most notable aspects of my dad’s role in the case and his decision was his explicit condemnation of attempts made throughout the case to improperly influence the Court.
As much success as he experienced in his own professional life, he took far more immense pride in the accomplishments and milestones of his beloved Rita, and the accomplishments of my sisters and I and his cherished grandchildren. My dad loved his family dearly, and his roles of husband, father and grandfather were by far his most cherished. The sheer joy and pride he experienced in being a grandpa was palpable in the love he has shown to each of his six grandchildren and the special bond he formed with each of them. As for me, Susan and Abby, he lovingly supported each of us in all of our pursuits in his trademark kind, generous and enthusiastic way. And I have so very much treasured his interest in my legal practice, including his interest in hearing about my clients, their cases, the judges I appear before, my legal victories and the words of encouragement he has so lovingly offered after my legal defeats, even up until most recently.
The Bonus Round
When we first made plans nearly three years ago to relocate my dad from New York City, his birthplace and home for 89 years, nearby to us in Marlton NJ, we could not have anticipated the tenuous medical state in which he transitioned. But after a week in the hospital and another 10 days in rehab to regain his strength post-pneumonia, he rapidly bounced back and resumed his charming, engaging, cheerful and upbeat ways, gathering many admirers in the process.
Many people have hobbies – my dad’s was people, all people, from all walks of life and diverse backgrounds, enjoying people, meeting people, relating to people, sharing stories with people, and just being with people.
And so during my dad’s last nearly three years in Marlton New Jersey, what Paul, Cassidy, Kieran and I refer to as the bonus round, he distilled into his very essence; energized and fueled by each and every encounter with loved ones, and endearing himself to all the people with whom he made contact, the Brightview staff who adored him, the health care professionals who cared for him, our friends and Cassidy and Kieran’s friends who admired and truly enjoyed him, and service workers anywhere and everywhere who were so very eager to please him.
A close second and third to my dad’s love of people was his enjoyment of food and fashion. Every meal was an opportunity to hold court, to be adjourned only after indulging in a proper dessert. Fellowship was best enjoyed over a meal, and my visits, regardless of time of day, were typically met with the question, “so where are we going for dinner?”
Likewise, every day was an opportunity to indulge his fashion sense and compliment others and take notice in their fashion choices, the brighter the better. Initially, his caregivers were overwhelmed by the number of costume changes in any given day, but over time embraced his desire to maintain his dapper appearance despite his slow decline. In addition, every day began with the selection of a specific hat through which he displayed his many passions and interests, including his role as a proud grandpa, his love of NY sports and all things Mickey Mouse.
Dad, the last nearly 3 years have truly been a gift for me, for Paul, for Cassidy and for Kieran which we will cherish in our hearts and hold on to so very tightly as we navigate the overwhelming sadness and grief without your physical presence. We weaved you into the fabric of our daily lives with beautiful, strong silken threads that will always be a precious and cherished part of us. Our time with you over the last nearly three years has left an indelible mark on our lives and hearts that we will carry forward in all that we do, in all that we are, and how we love forever more...
It has been an honor and a privilege to care for you; to dote on you; to laugh with you; to comfort you; to have you join us and be with us for Cassidy and Kieran’s theatrical performances front row and center and hear you shouting “Bravo” with gusto and overwhelming pride; to have you with us at Cassidy and Kieran’s sporting events cheering them on from the sidelines with immense grandpa pride; to share meals with you; to go to movies with you; to eat ice cream with you; to ride in the car with you; to be by your side for dental visits and medical appointments; to arrange spa visits for you; to celebrate birthdays, holidays and other special family occasions with you; to hear you reflect on your life and reminisce about your past; to shop for your favorite treats; to fill your apartment with beautiful flowers; to be your advocate, your cheerleader; your right hand; your champion and your confidante.
Finally, I am so very grateful for the gift of having been able to sit by your bedside on Thursday evening, to hold your arm, sing to you, play your favorite music for you, provide comfort to you and cover you in warm blankets as you started your journey to be reunited with mom, the love of your life, and then say goodbye to you and allow Paul, Cassidy, Kieran, Susan, David, Rachel, Emily, Jessica, Matthew, Abby and Wendy say goodbye to you by facetime.
Dad, I love you so very much and you will always be my hero. Thank you for the immense love and support you have provided to me in my lifetime that has made me who I am today, and for inspiring me to be the best version of myself. And while it feels right now as if the ground beneath me has caved in, the walls around me have given way, and I am free-floating having become unmoored from your physical presence, it gives me much needed comfort knowing that you are now once again reunited with mom, your beloved Rita, who you have missed so very much since her passing. It gives me comfort to see you holding hands with mom, knowing that you are both looking down on all of us, watching over us, your beloved and cherished family, beaming with love and joy. And it gives me immense comfort to know that you are smiling and kvelling with pride at the legacy you have created through the many many many lives you have touched in your nearly 92 years well-loved and well-lived. Dad, Grandpa, Mel, Melvie, we will hold you so very dear in our hearts, and our beautiful memories of you and all you have given and taught us will forever be a cherished blessing to us all.
My Dad The Charmer - by Abby Barasch
Our dad passed away today, another senseless loss in this relentless COVID nightmare. There is no good way for a loved one to die, but the pain and sadness of my dad having to spend the last few days in a hospital where we couldn’t comfort him during his darkest moments is truly painful. I’m beaten down by this pandemic. I’m exhausted by the shared suffering, the collective grief, and this restrictive way of interacting in the world. But I will still find the strength to honor my dad.
Our dad was 90+ years loved and had a life well-lived. He celebrated numerous milestones and rejoiced in many mitzvahs. I’m truly grateful for that. He was an incredibly generous and loving father, grandfather, husband, brother, uncle, cousin, colleague, neighbor, and friend. He was consistent, honest, smart, upbeat, and unbelievably charming. In fact, he embodied charm in most everything he did. He had a quirky sense of humor and had the unique ability to make others feel at ease no matter the circumstances. He was truly interested in people and what they had to say. He loved to talk, not in an arrogant way, but in a genuine and real way. He was as comfortable engaging in conversation with his grandchildren as he was discussing legal precedent with the lawyers in his courtroom or talking to neighbors and doormen in his condo and later to the staff at his nursing home. Our dad was a mensch.
Born and raised in the Midwood section of Brooklyn, the younger of two boys, our dad attended Midwood H.S., Brooklyn College, and earned his law degree at Cornell. He was a good Jewish boy who fulfilled the dreams of his strict and conservative, but loving parents. He built his law practice in Woodside, Queens with hard work and long hours. But for him, his greatest accomplishment was when he was appointed as a judge to the Supreme Court of Kings County. In the years that followed his appointment, he loved to introduce himself as Judge Barasch, not because he was an egomaniac but because he was deeply proud and gratified by what he had achieved. He was a fair and honest jurist and he demonstrated it with his strong sense of purpose, resolve, and tenacity as well as deep humility. These are only some of his amazing qualities and life lessons he imparted to me and my sisters.
Our dad was also a man ahead of his time. While our mom always had the reputation of being outspoken and opinionated, and gravitated towards taking charge of most things; my dad was very content and confident with his role out of the limelight. Together, he and my mom raised us to be strong-willed, strong-minded, and independent. He had a tremendous influence and impact on the women we’ve become. He never wavered in his support and always encouraged us to pursue our dreams. His family was always his top priority and he provided continuous love and guidance. He took enormous pleasure and joy in our life experiences, aspirations, and accomplishments. He embraced our spouses and our friends and everyone else in between. He cheered us on when we were successful and helped us through the rough patches. He was the number one cheerleader at his grandchildren’s many performances and sports activities. And he did it all with decency, gentleness, and grace and of course that ever present charm. We will miss him dearly.
Dad – Eulogy – June 2, 2020 - by Abby Barasch
In 2004, my dad retired from the Supreme Court of Kings County. Many people spoke in his honor at his retirement party, including the three of us, and I had given my dad a copy of my speech afterwards. When we were going through my parents things after my mom passed away in 2013, Patti found a copy of that speech in my dad’s drawer. The fact that he had saved it all those years truly touched me. I hope that the meaning he took from it made on impression on him and that he knew how much he meant to me. I’d like to share what my 37 year old self said about my dad at that time.
Unfortunately, I never had the opportunity to see my dad in action as a jurist, but based on the things that I’ve heard tonight I can only imagine that he approached his work on the bench in much the same way that he approaches everything else in life – in a calm, cool and thoughtful manner. I learned early on that while my dad could be soft-spoken and modest, when he did speak about something his words were well-chosen and meaningful, particularly when he was talking about something that was important to him, and certainly his work as a judge was very important to him.
From an early age, my dad taught me to approach every endeavor with passion and purpose whether I was playing a baseball game or completing a research assignment. When I graduated from college and was unsure about what direction to take, both of my parents supported my choices, despite the fact that they weren’t necessarily leading me to a specific vocation. Perhaps it was because I was the third and final child to graduate college, but I was always given the latitude to explore my options. That’s not to say that my dad didn’t have concerns as well as thoughts and suggestions that he articulated from time to time, but he never imposed his will on me, preferring that I work it out on my own. I believe that those same traits were what made him successful in the courtroom. Never one to rush to judgment, my dad always had a way of listening, deciphering, and reasoning that gave meaning to his beliefs and significance to his opinions, and which enabled him to always maintain a strong sense of fairness, purpose, and conviction.
Two years after I graduated from college and shortly before I left to teach English in Japan, my dad was nominated and elected to serve on the court. He had already had a successful law practice for more than twenty years and was about to embark on a new and exciting challenge. I watched as he enthusiastically embraced his new judicial role. It was easy to see in the way that he talked about his cases that he took great pride and satisfaction in making the right decisions and in making certain that justice prevailed. Many people live their lives without fully enjoying their jobs, yet my dad moved from one career he loved to another one that he grew to love even more. I expect that as he begins the third phase of his professional life as a mediator, he will bring the same passion and purpose that he brought to his other two careers and which formed the basis of his earliest lessons to me. I also hope that he finds time to enjoy all of the things that one should be enjoying as a retiree including spending even more time with his grandchildren and granddogs and taking longer vacations with my mom where he can really learn to relax and unwind. Most of all, I hope that he takes the time to look back on his life’s work and realize the great impact and influence he’s had on so many people’s lives.
Fast forwarding back to September 2013, the first several months after my mom passed away were some of the darkest and loneliest times of my life -- until now. During that fall, winter, and into the following spring, my weekly dinners with my dad were a combination of therapy and healing as the two of us struggled to navigate life without the person who personified passion, strength and meaning for both of us. At first, it was painfully sad as I listened to my dad talk about my mom and how much he missed her because I missed her deeply too. My dad would generally start our conversations by sharing a memory or an anecdote saying “I remember when your mommy….” Or “Your mommy and I used to….” I listened and often elaborated on the memory or added another funny or colorful detail and my dad would say “oh yeah…” and then happily get lost in his thoughts and memories. At first, it was extremely difficult as we both grappled with filling the void. But after many months, it became comforting to listen to his stories and remembrances because it made him happy to recall better times. I would ask him, what he missed most about my mom and he would say – “She was funny, she was sensitive and she was very very smart.” My dad was truly devoted and loyal to my mom. It was a romance that began in Fire Island and lasted more than five decades. It wasn’t a relationship without its flaws. But he was her Melvy and she was his beloved Ri-Ri. They completed each other and fed off each other in a partnership of mutual respect, admiration and of course love. It was another significant lesson in my life. When my dad moved into a nursing facility in 2017, our weekly dinners became monthly visits. And each time I saw him, he never failed to ask me “Have you seen or spoken to your mommy?” I would respond, “I speak to her every day, but she’s no longer with us.” My dad would momentarily look pained and then would respond sadly “oh yeah” and proceed to get lost in his thoughts. It never failed to amaze me how his love, devotion, and commitment to my mom transcended her death.
My dad’s consistency, decency, gentleness, kindness, and dedication as well as his loving and charming nature are only some of the traits that I will miss most. I will also always cherish the fact that he officiated at my wedding. He loved and embraced Wendy as he did his sons-in-law and gave us the incredible gift of marrying us, taking enormous pride and joy in his role. He spent several hours working with me on how he wanted to lead the ceremony to make certain to get it just right because that’s who he was. He was truly a loving and giving father and father-in-law. He was also a very proud, generous, and caring grandpa and I am thankful that he had an opportunity to watch his grandchildren grow up and was able to participate in so many of their accomplishments, successes and achievements. There was nothing that gave him more pleasure than being surrounded by his family and celebrating many milestones and mitzvahs. I feel truly grateful and blessed to have had him in my life for as long as we did and know that his influence and spirit will live on in all of us. I know that my dad is now reunited with his beloved RiRi and they’re b
oth smiling down and watching over all of us and continuing to provide their love, guidance, strength & support.
And there’s just one more memory of my dad that I want to share that hopefully sums up the full picture of who he was. Growing up, my bedroom was right down the hall from my parents bathroom. As part of my dad’s ritual of getting ready every day, he would shower and then shave. Maybe it was his unabashed nature or that he was just used to living with four females, but he would always leave the door slightly ajar presumably to let the steam out after his shower so as not to cut himself while shaving. He would stand in front of the mirror with his towel wrapped around his waist, his hair (since he had hair then) hanging down, and shaving cream on his face. He would belt out Cat Stevens Morning Has Broken in his deep baritone voice. When I was looking up the lyrics to the song online, I found out that it was a hymn initially written in 1931 and was often sung at funerals. I wish I could replicate my dad’s booming baritone voice and sing it for you, but I’d like to play it instead. This is for you Dad, I will miss you dearly and deeply. RIP.
Morning Has Broken – Cat Stevens
Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing
Praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word
Sweet the rain's new fall, sunlit from heaven
Like the first dew fall on the first grass
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden
Sprung in completeness where His feet pass
Mine is the sunlight
Mine is the morning
Born of the One Light Eden saw play
Praise with elation, praise every morning
God's recreation of the new day
Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing
Praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the Word