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LifeStory Episode 16

"This is wonderful, Marcia."

Karen C.

"Thanks for so many nice comments. What great publicity for my books."

Elizabeth C.

"Wow, Thanks Marcia, Inspires me."

Gary S.

Blog Host, Marcia Rosen

Author of “My Gangster Father and Me” will be published in 2024. Also, author of 11 books, including My Memoir Workbook, has presented numerous Memoir Writing Programs and Encouraging the Writer Within You Presentations for over 16 years.

A Memoir Detective

A good detective needs to be tenacious, patient, look at the truths of a situation, and ask questions that get to the heart of the matter. Exactly what is needed to write a good memoir. How do you search for clues about your history and their impact on your life? Be your own memoir detective.

My Newest Book, "Murder at the Zoo" is now available


By Patricia Crandall, Author of 9 Books

It is joyous

to watch children

reach for Christmas toys,

dolls for little girls

and trucks for small boys.

Beneath a spreading evergreen

are shimmering golden thistles,

miniature toy drums and

slick silver whistles.

Santa Claus

dressed in red

carries a sack

within a sled.

He gives to folks


merry, pleasing,


Special Holiday Story of Love Found: Just in Time

Fabric by Elizabeth Cooke, 99, Author of 21 Book

‘Just in time, you found me just in time.

Before you came my time was running low…”

That was our song, mine and Bob Cooke’s. We had both been married before - each with a pair of children, and when I was 40 years old, and Bob 52, we consummated THE marriage that lasted 23 years until his death by heart attack.

“I was lost. The losing dice were tossed…”

Bob was a gambler at heart…and a sportsman at best… Sports Editor of The New York Herald Tribune - then head of PR at Schaffer Brewery with emphasis on ‘The Circle of sports’ - oh yes, he was a gambler - and he was beloved by all who met him.

He was a reporter at heart - genuinely interested in the stories of others and prepared to accept and assist. That was Bob Cooke…the kindest and most generous of men with his deep love of what…PEOPLE.

We married at a Justice of the Peace in Patterson, New Jersey, with Nancy Regensburg and Jack Fernandez standing up for us. We then took the Meteor Train to Miami for a quick honeymoon. Nancy gave us a Sara Lee frozen orange cake, and Jack a bottle of Scotch to commemorate the event. “Why aren’t you flying to Miami. Why the train?” Jack Fernandez questioned. Bob’s response was to shake his head. He had been a bomber pilot in World War 11, bombing Monte Casino in Northern Italy from an American base in Sardinia. On his return to the States, he never wanted to fly again!

And he didn’t. We didn’t. Train, car, bus, boat - but no airplane -never. It was December 27th, the year 1965, and we arrived in the sparkling city of Miami, indulged in stone crabs with a mustardy sauce, and I remember saying “You know, I could live here.” His response was one of glee “You could? We could! Let’s do it!” And we did!

Bob was a wonderful writer. Words were his music. His daily column at The Tribune (with a handsome picture of his face at the top), his reporting on TV of baseball games and the fights at Madison Square Garden, his voice compellingly strong - all these were so eloquent that he became renowned. Bob wrote a beautiful book titled “Wake Up The Echoes” about the world of sports. And in Florida, he continued to write for several publications like “Sports Illustratedd”. He also did promotions for The Hialeah Race Track (which delighted him!)

In New York City, when we walked the streets, many strangers would acknowledge him: “Hi, Bob.” Once, we were joined in our walk by the then Mayor of New York City, Bob Wagner. The strangers “Hi, Bob,” was for Bob Cooke and not for the Mayor of the city of New York.

Bob became the fabric of my life - with a new pattern, new colors…laughter and sex and home - no matter where - New York, Miami - he provided me a life with dogs and stepchildren, (and my own two young ones) - A life! He provided me and I hope I provided him. What a way to honor Christmas, and the New Year to come - to plan and prepare for a new and different life - without The Racquet Club (for Bob) and Toots Shor’s on West 51st street (for Bob) or The Twenty-One Club - unless we visited NYC to connect with my parents and Bob’s two older sons.

Miami was it - with first a house on Biscaya Island with a pool, then a smaller home in Miami Shores. My kids went to Lear School and later to College in Jacksonville. In the meantime, it was Bob and me and the dogs, Charlie, a yellow lab, and Nicky, a white poodle-mix - and quiet evenings with friends, louder nights of parties, but a serenity together that made the world especially comfortable and rich. Bob Cooke. What a guy. The lovely song “Just in Time”, music by Jules Stone, lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, that was first heard in the Broadway show, “Bells are Ringing” with Judy Holiday in 1956. was OUR song. It told the whole story - of a totally blind date that lasted a lifetime.


Life can be strangely ridiculous. I remember Jack Fernandez, a younger boy friend of Nancy Regensburg, getting down on his knees on my dining room floor and saying to me, “You have to meet someone. I guarantee you will marry him!” “Marry? You must be kidding,” was my reply. What an idea ! I was in the middle of a nasty divorce and at this point, any man was anathema. But Jack persisted, “His name is Bob Cooke.”And one evening, Bob Cooke and I met - with no Nancy, No Jack - just us two - at The Essex House bar. Talk about a blind date. I had to recognize him by his Racquet Club tie. But once I did, the reaction was immediate - fortunately for both of us.

So life is ridiculously strange! Thank God., Author of “A Letter”

Following is part of my LifeStory:

From My Gangster Father and Me


This is my father’s story and my story, and yes, my mom’s story. It’s our relationship to each other and how the pieces of our lives fit together. Sometimes it was a good fit, more so between my dad and I, but not always of course. My mom and dad brought their own history into their relationship and as my parents.

Still, there is the age-old question: Are we responsible for the sins of our fathers? There were actions by my father which showed his darker side. My father’s career and lifestyle owned many secrets. Some secrets have become my secrets.


For more stories about me and my gangster father, check out the book The Gourmet Gangster.

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Dec 02, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Thanks to so many who have emailed me wonderful comments, Marcia


Dec 01, 2023

Excellent presentation of my poem Christmastime and Santa Claus. I so enjoy the writings of Elisabeth Cooke.

Dec 02, 2023
Replying to

Love the poem too, Macia

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