A few words about Ted Baumgold, from Hank Gans...

In 1965 my family's life was in turmoil. My father's house was not a place one would choose to spend any time. It was my first year at Cherry Lawn and I was very fortunate to have Jesse Baumgold as a classmate and also as a close neighbor. Ted and Tamar Baumgold opened their home and their hearts to me and I became almost the fifth Baumgold child. While the holidays were dysfunctionally miserable at the Gans house they were wonderfully warm at the Baumgold's and I treasure those memories.

After the Cherry Lawn prom, Cherry Lawners moved straight to the Baumgold house in mass to continue the celebration. Ted and Tamar were gracious hosts to many teenagers, making it seem as if this was an everyday occurrence and that every Cherry Lawner was family.

In later years, when I was a student at UConn, Stamford and worked at Cherry Lawn as the Biology lab instructor, my family's life was even worse than when I was a student. The Baumgolds set up a room for me in their house where I could retreat and find a peaceful place to study. A place was set for me at their table and the door was always open.

In 1972 Ted and Tamar allowed me to use their beautiful Tudor style house as a set for a low budget feature film I produced. As I recall we took over their house for about a week. Again, Ted and Tamar made an entire film crew feel like family and never complained, even when filming ran late and we were shooting an exterior scene below their bedroom window at 2AM.

In the later seventies and into the eighties I was a busy commercial photographer and was privileged not only to have Ted Baumgold as a friend but also as a client. He trusted me without hesitation to take his valuable diamonds back to my studio to photograph them, including the world's largest brown diamond which, as I recall, was about 60 carats. But I'd really enjoy the times that I set up a small studio in Ted's Fifth Avenue diamond district offices. I once spent about ten days in one of Ted's offices photographing a tiny marquis diamond the size of my pinky fingernail. It was one of the most perfect diamonds of its type ever cut and because of this it had incredible value. Ted ran the photograph as a full page ad in Town and Country. Ted had the same dignified and refined, yet relaxed demeanor as a businessman as he did as a father, friend and talented musician. I thoroughly enjoyed the many hours I spent at Baumgold Brothers as his photographer. Ted was firm in his decisions but never once was critical or demanding. He watched me work with interest and gave me total creative freedom. He and his nephews always had me join them for lunch in the conference room and many of our best advertising photography ideas came out of those easygoing lunches.

It turned out that my grandmother's first job, when she left her family's home in Newton, Massachusetts to move to the Big Apple, was as Ted Baumgold's father's secretary. I have come to conclude that, at least for me, my relationship with the Baumgold family was meant to be and that the times I spent with Ted and his family are some of my happiest memories. I think anyone who knew Ted Baumgold will never forget him. He was one of a kind.

Hank Gans, CLS '67