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Sunday, December 31, 2023

My dad's life


Peter Nash was born in Astoria, New York in 1938. His parents Dorothy and Akos (both of Jewish heritage though not particularly religious) and his brother Larry moved to LA around 1942, (4 years old) living in Los Feliz on Myra Avenue. His father, a medical doctor from Hungary (born in a town called Poklostelek, near what is today Oradea, Romania), met his mom, Dorothy in 1929 in Tours, France.
In 1957, (age 19) he went to Reed College for 2 years, (along with two good friends from LA, Jon Appleton and Tommy Rosin) planning to be a doctor, but he ended up really enjoying and thriving in his humanities courses and having a harder time in his science and math classes. He went to Europe for a year to figure out what he wanted, trying to be a writer in Marseille and traveling around other parts of France, and taking a trip from London to Israel by bus with his then girlfriend, Gail Rosin Wread. 
Back in the US, he went to San Francisco State U. and got better grades in science classes so that he could attend medical school at USC. He did an internship in San Francisco and lived in Berkeley and Oakland at the time, meeting my mom at folk dancing in Berkeley.
He participated in the civil rights movement in 1965, (age 27) attending rallies in Selma, Alabama and Bogalusa, Louisiana, and had a gun pulled on him. 
He was a conscientious objector for the Vietnam war and went to jail for 3 days for this.
He married my mom around 1968 and Andrew (River) was born in 1971. They traveled to Yap in 1972 and then returned to Santa Cruz to live in Bonny Doon. I was born in 1976 and Rocky (Elijah) was born in 1977. They divorced in 1979 and my Dad married Judy, a nurse practitioner of Armenian heritage that same year. He and Judy ran Cedar Medical Clinic together for 25 years or so before leaving Santa Cruz to move to Petrolia. He continued some work as a doctor in Garberville, but transitioned to retirement and to writing of poetry. Peter and Judy lived in Petrolia until around 2017 when they moved to Mendocino and Aptos, where they have lived since.

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