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She was the person with the most open mind I have ever met, I think, and also the person I felt most

Gary Gilbert, childhood friend


During elementary school, I spent a lot of time at Debbie's house, we're the same age. We were friends and relatives and our mothers were friends. We lived not far from them. I played cards thousands of times with Debbie's dad. It took him a long time until he would place the card.


I had a lot of conversations with Debbie. A lot of my conversations with Debbie were in the car, when we went out with the moms for errands or a trip or a picnic at the airport.


Debbie is the only person in the world I have talked to about the meaning of life. We never had a religious conversation, and a conversation about the path Debbie chose we only had years later, but as children we kept talking about the meaning of life. Debbie is one of the smartest people I have ever met and she has helped me articulate a lot of my perspectives on life.


She always had such logical explanations for everything. She would not get anything without dismantling every aspect of a particular subject and reassembling it after her processing. She was the person with the most open mind I met, I think, ever and also the person I felt most close to.


Debbie had a lot of thoughts running through her head. I remember conversations we talked about "what does it mean to be in friendships?", Not between us, but, what can we expect from people, what should our expectations be from those close to us. Why we are ashamed.


There's a scene in the movie "Yellow Submarine," I think it's Ringo who took something and threw something on the floor that made a hole to jump in and disappear. Debbie and I watched a movie at the cinema and it was a moment that we looked at each other and said "hey, this is our idea", because all the time before we talked about the possibility of making a hole and throwing ourselves and disappearing into it, because we were both so shy.


We had many experiences together. I get a picture of me and Debbie and our parents at a show of soldiers who seem to have come from the future. We were very surprised when during their procession, some people who were right next to me and next to Debbie, suddenly flew to the sky.


In my experience, it would seem that Debbie is always looking for a place to belong to, in school and even in her home it would seem she feels like a guest


In high school, the frequency of meetings decreased a bit, but we would see each other on holidays, Debbie would come to our house a lot.


When McDonalds was founded, the first branch in the world opened close to our home. Debbie had already started thinking about repenting and was very much debating whether to go eat there. At the end the temptation was so strong that she decided to taste it once. When we got there, a philosophical discussion arose between us as to whether she was already eating non-kosher, whether she was allowed to eat a cheeseburger, which is a hamburger with cheese.


As she became more and more religious we moved away. I know I did not understand it then, I do not understand it even now. Over the years, after Debbie decided to immigrate to Israel, she wrote me several letters. This is one of the things I deal with. My father said to me, "Why don't you answer Debbie?" But I felt so close to her, I felt betrayed.


Since she immigrated to Israel she has become very religious, she has already started the process in America, but in Israel it was something very different, I could not accept it. I do not know why.


Debbie had a perfect smile.



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