Tuesday, March 05, 2024


Historical Society Hosts ‘Sam’s War’ for Veterans Day

On Veterans Day, Nov. 11, the Westport Historical Society (WHS) will host “Sam’s War: A GI’s Journey,” a film that choreographs a Jewish American soldier’s fight against Nazi Germany.

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Sam Brody of Norwalk gestures as he recounts his World War II experiences in “Sam’s War.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

The 78-minute film, to be shown at 6:30 p.m. in the WHS Sheffer Gallery at 25 Avery Place, with be followed by a question and answer period with title character Sam Brody, a Norwalk resident who is now 95, and filmmaker Joel L. Freedman of Westport, WHS officials said.

The two met through a mutual friend about eight years ago. Freedman said he was immediately taken by Brody’s recounting of his experiences and eventually filmed about 45 hours of interviews over a five-year period.

According to Barbara Peck, WHS assistant director, “Sam’s War” is a riveting, personal account of a GI’s “death-defying experiences.”

Patrick Ryan, 62

Patrick Ryan of Fairfield, former president and owner of Cadillac/Saab of Greenwich and Saab of Westport, died Oct. 27 at home. He was 62.

He was the son of the late Henry Ryan and Mary (Harrington) Ryan of Simsbury,  He was a 1974 graduate of St. Bonaventure University and began his career at Price Waterhouse. After becoming a partner at Touche Ross, he joined Marketing Corporation of America (MCA) in 1985 as vice president of real estate.

At MCA, he was president and chief operating officer of various companies, including: Yue-Sai Kan Cosmetics in Shenzen, China, the Hotel Jerome in Aspen, Colo., and a commercial real estate group. He later became the president of Beachside Capital Partners, Inc. and, in 2005 founded the Ryan Auto Group where he was president and owner of Cadillac/Saab of Greenwich and Saab of Westport.

He recently sold this business and had retired. Although he had a number of accomplishments, his family admired him most for his sincerity, optimism, and kindness to everyone.

Leonard Weinstein, 98

Leonard Weinstein of Longboat Key, Fla., a former Westport resident, died Oct. 22. He was 98.

He was born in Bridgeport on Dec. 9, 1916 and was a resident of Westport for most of his life before moving to Florida.

After graduating from Wesleyan University and Yale Law School, he served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II as a bombardier in a B29 aircraft. Afterwards, along with his brother, Stanley, he owned and ran a successful auto parts supply business in Connecticut.

Upon his retirement from the auto parts business, he launched a career as a personal financial adviser and money manager.

Martin Berg, 24

Martin Berg of Westport died Oct 20 in Boulder, Colo. He was 24.

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Martin Berg: 2010 Staples grad. Contributed photo

Born in Tromsø, Norway on Sept. 18, 1991, he was a son of Goerild and Stig Berg. He moved to Westport with his family in 1997 and was a 2010 graduate of Staples High School.

He was enrolled at University of Colorado Boulder. He was an avid skier, lived an adventurous and outgoing life.

In addition to his parents, he is survived by his twin brother Kristian Berg and younger brother Erik, both of Westport, as well as his maternal and paternal grandparents, several aunts, uncles and many cousins in Norway.