The Israeli-Palestinian conflict was the furthest thing from Joseph Fteha’s mind when he sought to sue the family next door to his elderly mother’s house for building their garage over her property line. True, the property was in East Jerusalem, his late Palestinian father’s native city. But what did a boundary dispute there between him and the Arabs next door to his mother’s property have to do with Middle East politics?
Under the silent gaze of his grandparents, Orthodox Jews from Hungary preserved in sepia on his living room wall in Park Slope, Andrew Mark lay dying last year.
He was suffering from cancer of the liver and colon, which had spread to the lymphatic system.
A sofa bed was set up in the living room. Andrew’s last days would be spent there, cared for by Marion, his wife of 50 years, comforted by their son and daughter, visited weekly by a rabbi and social worker from the Jewish Hospice of Greater New York.