“G-d Bless America:” A Story About the Power of Music
Alice Krauss was a young child when she immigrated from Lithuania to the United States with her family. One of the first things she learned to do was sing both “The Star Spangled Banner” and “G-d Bless America”. Alice grew up a proud American. When she had children of her own, she started a new family tradition of singing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “G-d Bless America” and other songs as nighttime lullabies. When her children began their families, Alice continued this tradition with her grandchildren.
One of Alice’s children, Sylvia, moved to Cedar Village in 2014. During her time at Cedar Village she participated in the Music and Memory program. Her daughter, Rita Baker, was her listening partner and helped identify the music loaded onto Sylvia’s iPod. Each night before Sylvia went to bed they would sing “G-d Bless America,” “The Star-Spangled Banner” and other songs, as they reminisced about family. Rita says “Listening to music alone is great, but sharing music is even more powerful! It is all about the connection and making memories.” Rita has fond memories of Alice singing to her and her brother each night. Her cousins share these memories as well.
Sylvia recently passed away. At her funeral the family shared their similar experiences of the bedtime lullaby tradition. To honor her memory, as well as Alice’s, they all stood in the cemetery and sang the songs they learned growing up. The songs that brought joy and comfort to the family will continue to be a family tradition forever.