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Pictures of a Thanksgiving That No One Pictured

  • November 28, 2020

Born in Germany, Mr. Burns survived the Holocaust, immigrated to the United States in 1947 and spent a long career designing toys for Mattel. In retirement he has led an active life of writing, gardening and exercising. Though he lives alone, he feels fortunate that all three of his children live nearby; before the pandemic, he would usually see one of them every day.

“The family is everything,” he said.

To stay safe this year, instead of a big dinner for the holiday, the family opted for a small socially distanced lunch on the patio at Mr. Burns’s son Ken’s house. Mr. Burns wondered what Thanksgiving would look like out in broad daylight, instead of under artificial bulbs in the evening. But the change didn’t worry him.

“I’m pretty malleable,” he said. “We adapt.”

Later on, Mr. Burns saw his two daughters and their children using Portal, a video device that his grandson set up for him recently. “Sure, I would like to do more things with my grandkids, but I can’t, so I don’t,” he said. “It’s just a few more months.”

— Isadora Kosofsky

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