While it sometimes seems like our industry has a surplus of strong personalities, those that exude a genuine warmth are always welcome, and sorely missed when they leave us. Last week's launch of Authenticity Lighting at the Dallas Market, marking the return of Murray Feiss and his family to the business they love, was bittersweet in light of the news that his wife of six decades Dorothy had passed away one week earlier on Jan. 14.
Just before market, I received a touching e-mail from Eddie Goldberger, a Murray Feiss sales representative in the Washington, D.C., area, wanting to express his appreciation for Dorothy and his grief at her passing. "I had lost a friend who could never be replaced," he writes, "and our industry had lost an icon."
"[Dorothy] was very special to me and my family when we found out my daughter had cancer," Goldberger continues. "Lauren was nine years old and was diagnosed with lymphoma. We went through two years of extensive chemotherapy and Dorothy was always in constant contact with me. She sent gifts to Lauren and even sent gifts to Lauren's twin sister Rachel so she wouldn't feel left out. We spoke on the phone every two to three weeks and she encouraged me to stay strong and that all would be well. Of course, she was right and Lauren is now 16 and celebrating five years off treatment.
"When I told Lauren that Dorothy had passed away, she wanted to know what we could do for her family. I told her that we would write a note to her husband Murray to thank him for giving us all Dorothy. May Dorothy rest in peace and know that she is missed by the lighting industry, her family, all her friends and especially the Goldberger family."
I'm sure anyone who came into contact with Dorothy could share a similar story of her Costco-sized kindness. We love you, Dorothy.