Bradley J. Bronstein Youth Lounge
On Sunday, June 1, 2014, the Bradley J. Bronstein Youth Lounge was rededicated. The video at this link was prepared and shown for the occasion.
Brad was 16 when an auto accident took his life in 1989. The youth lounge at our predecessor congregation, Temple Beth El of Greater Buffalo, was named for him. When Temple Beth Tzedek emerged from the merger of Temple Beth El and Temple Shaarey Zedek, the youth lounge of our building was named for Brad.For the rededication ceremony, Brad's brother, Andrew, sent the following message:
I want to thank you for being here tonight! Not because of the dedication that is taking place but because of your drive and desire to be around the people next to you. Without even being there, or knowing you, I know the people around you tonight are "lifers." And if you are up on your current terms, you know that a "lifer" is someone you will have in your life, forever. After today, time will pass, and life, well, happens! You might find that special someone, have a family, find that dream job, that takes you to another side of the planet, take up those hobbies or activities that will always keep you busy.
Whatever it is, you will have each other, and others, as lifers. Whether it's Facebook or other social media, they will remain in your lives, as your cheerleaders, your fans, your friends. They will be there for your ups and your downs and everything in between. And though life may get in the way, your lifers will always share a common bond, the memories you share and create together. Whether it's for lack of conversation or to make the other one smile, you will say "remember that time..." "Remember when we..". However you fill in those blanks, those memories have been made with your friends at school, camp, clubs, and, yes, here at Temple. Some of my greatest memories growing up came from my time with my Temple lifers and those I went through pre USY with, then USY with. Whether it was the fun events that took place in my former youth lounge at Temple Beth El or just hanging out, in our free time having those meaningful and meaningless conversations and bonding. Sometimes, school life wasn't as forgiving and times with friends were tough, but I always knew that I could retreat to my Temple's youth lounge and be accepted with open loving arms by my lifers who, of course, I am still friends with today.
My brother Brad's life was cut short tragically, when he died at 16 years old in a car accident, July 24, 1989. He was a nice guy, with a beaming smile. He was funny, charismatic, and genuine. Brad was a great chef, singer, Jew. His greatest friends came from those same strong communal and Jewish organizations from the JCC and Temple. Though he never got a chance to make lifers, many people whom he touched made a lifer out of him. I find it was actually most of the friends he made in USY. Like Leah, Marc, and many more members of this great congregation. Though we are all old folks, and you are the young ones getting through school and bonding when you can, we were once you (some of us still are). My family is honored that this great place, where memories and "lifers" are made, will be named after Brad. We invite you to join us as one of Brad's "lifers" by friending him on Facebook. There you can see pictures, videos, and hear from his friends. We ask you to post pictures and selfies and things like that from the youth lounge as a tribute to what this great room can and will become in his memory; there is no doubt that he will smile upon all of us for our contribution. Thank you.