Meet Carlton Senior Living spotlight resident, Michael Samberg – Michael was born on July 11, 1921, in the lower east of New York City. In 1920, during World War I, his parents came to the United States from Poland with his sister Anne, grandma and cousin. His dad acquired his own restaurant with a partner, but it was a tough life for them.
Later, his family moved to the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. His father bought a row house with a substantial mortgage. Michael was placed into kindergarten at age 4 and then public school through high school. He graduated high school at 16 and got a job working part-time to help support his family.
When the Great Depression hit, and his father lost his restaurant and home to foreclosure. After 2 years of college Michael switched to the evening session to obtained full-time work. He did assembly work at the minimum wage of 25 cents an hour earning $10 a week. He kept $3 and gave the rest to his mother.
When World War II started in Europe, he submitted his job application and drafting samples to a company which manufactured anti-aircraft arc lights. Sadly, after getting the job, the personnel manager called him and sad the supervisor would not employ someone of the Jewish faith. Later, he got a drafting job for $18 a week in a machine shop making torpedo tools for Britain.
By early 1941, he was designing machine tools, jigs and fixtures to build a newly designed Sherman Tank and earning a dollar an hour plus overtime. By 1944, Michael was determined to enter the military service. Six months after entering the service he was in combat with Company of the 101st infantry Regt, 26th Yankee Division, 3rd Army. The Battle of the Bulge got him sent to various hospitals because his feet were frostbitten, and by August 25th, he was discharged for disability.
Michael returned home and completed his college education. In February, he attended a Valentine’s Day Party where he met his wife Ruth. On August 21, 1948, they married at Ruth’s mother’s home in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn. They honeymooned on Cape Cod and set up home in the Little Italy section on the lower east side of New York.
Michael and Ruth worked very hard to get their education and good jobs to help support their family. Ruth got her education in Social Work and taught lower grade students. Michael graduated from the Polytechnic University of Brooklyn with his Master’s in Engineering. They moved around a lot for jobs and to ensure they lived in good places for their children. The couple has two beautiful and smart children, Mark and Eslee, both doctors. They also have four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Michael retired as Vice-President of Manufacturing. In 1994 Michael and Ruth relocated to Victorville, California and where they lived for 10 years. They became very active with their family as family is so important to Michael. They moved to Merced and about a year after their son and his family relocated there.
Michael enjoys being a part of the Carlton Senior Living Sacramento community. He feels that everyone does a fantastic job. He also jokes that the food is great when it’s not spicy. He loves the company and getting to meet new people.
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Written by Myna Saengsavanh