Latest News:  

English>>Life & Culture

A 92-year-old's tale of lost love in Shanghai

(Shanghai Daily)

08:34, May 28, 2013

Gary Matzdorff recalls his time in the city at the Shanghai Jewish Refugee Museum.(Photo/Shanghai Daily)

Gary Matzdorff could not hold back the tears as he took a walk down memory lane on his return to the former Ohel Moshe Synagogue in Shanghai.

Memories came flooding back as the 92-year-old Jew spoke of a Shanghai woman he loved and lost.

The synagogue, now part of the Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum, was also the place where Matzdorff married a Jewish woman 66 years ago when they were both refugees in the city, fleeing the Nazis.

But Matzdorff said it could well have been a Shanghai woman standing next to him if she did not break his heart.

For Matzdorff, Shanghai is not only the city that saved his life but it also a place he calls home. He was only 17 when the World War II broke out.

This was his sixth trip to the city, digging out old memories of his time here from 1939 to 1949 and also to look for his former love Cleo Wang.

"Dear Miss Wang, where are you? If we can meet again, our ages may add up to over 200," Matzdorff said.

Matzdorff, who now lives in the United States, can still speak some Shanghai dialect as the locals discovered. He still remembers the location of his former residence in the modern city and shared his story of lost love for a young Shanghai woman with them.

Dancing hall

Matzdorff said he met Cleo Wang, a young and beautiful Shanghai woman at a ballroom in 1941.

"One late afternoon my friend and I went to the top of Wing On Department Store where you could dance with girls after buying tickets. After an hour, two young women walked in as customers," said Matzdorff.

As the ballroom had a rule that disallowed strangers from taking the floor, Matzdorff and his friend gave a note to the waiter to give it to the two women. In it, they asked: "Would you like to meet us and have dinner somewhere else?"

【1】 【2】

We recommend:

Audi Fashion Festival opens in Singapore

Dare to ride terrifying roller coasters?

Dancers perform 'Mirror and Music' in Taipei

Foggy Xin'an River in Jiande, E China

A taste of Russia at Harbin's Volga Manor

Zhang Ziyi poses at Cannes Film Festival

Those weird people in McDonald

Celebrating 'mother of Chinese opera'

Top 10 Hurun best-selling Chinese artists

Email|Print|Comments(Editor:LiXiang、Ye Xin)

Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. East China Sea Fleet conducts drill

  2. Snipers complete military skill training

  3. Photos of the week (May 19 - May 25)

  4. Thrilling hurdlers in street

  5. Teacher nabbed for molesting students

  6. Group wedding for migrant workers

  7. World's largest Lego in Times Square

  8. China defends Sudirman Cup

  9. Ladies in finance industries

  10. Most competitive airlines in the world

Most Popular


  1. Sino-Indian diplomatic miracle embarrasses Japan
  2. U.S. dollar could weaken most Asian currencies
  3. Apple's tax dodge smacks of abuse
  4. Chinese premier's Swiss tour fruitful, influential
  5. China-Switzerland FTA to benefit both sides
  6. What China-Switzerland FTA brings about?
  7. What does Premier Li's Europe visit mean?
  8. Not enough attention paid to neurological diseases
  9. Why Chinese youths appear gloomy
  10. Let taxi fare reform be fair

What’s happening in China

China's Shandong witnesses frequent thunderstorms, downpours | More Photos

  1. Past week sees no new H7N9 cases, 1 death
  2. 'Queen of Snake-raising': Road to success
  3. Farmers take advantage of rainfalls to plant corn
  4. China's social insurance funds revenue soars
  5. Centuried trestle damaged by heavy rain