A Toddler, An Open Window And An Amazing Catch Marvin Goldstein was a toddler in 1945 when he fell out of a window five stories up in Brooklyn, N.Y. Fortunately for him, Sal Mauriello was there. Goldstein tells the story of Mauriello's great catch — and their reunion years later — to his son, Eric.
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A Toddler, An Open Window And An Amazing Catch

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A Toddler, An Open Window And An Amazing Catch

A Toddler, An Open Window And An Amazing Catch

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Today's StoryCorps tale is quite a catch. You'll recall how the StoryCorps project has been recording conversations between loved ones. Tens of thousands of people have participated, including Marvin Goldstein and his son Eric. Marvin recently told this story about being 3 years old and falling out of a window in his family's Brooklyn apartment in 1945.

Mr. MARVIN GOLDSTEIN: The windows at that time did not have window guards. I leaned out, and I had one hand on the window inside, and the other hand, I was leaning out, and let go. And I fell five stories. Sal Mauriello, who was a barber, was coming home early that day. And he heard a woman scream. She pointed up to the window. And he took off his coat, and I fell into his arms.

Mr. ERIC GOLDSTEIN: Is that what happened? I mean, he took his jacket off and he used his jacket as a bit of a net to catch you?

Mr. M. GOLDSTEIN: Yes.

Mr. E. GOLDSTEIN: Good thing he was a good catch.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. M. GOLDSTEIN: So, I fractured my nose but there was no trauma. And I became very popular in the neighborhood. My mother's name was Blanche, and I was known as Blanche's son who fell out of the window.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. E. GOLDSTEIN: So whatever happened to Sal? I mean, he's a patron saint Sal. He's our hero.

Mr. M. GOLDSTEIN: Well, it turned out that his daughter was a reporter and every Passover holiday, he would say: I wonder what happened to Marvin Goldstein? So finally, she said, Dad, let's see if we can find out. And so what happened was we met, and it was absolutely thrilling to see Sal. We hugged, we kissed, and it was a glorious reunion.

Mr. E. GOLDSTEIN: I remember that, because it was on my birthday, April 24th, 1988. And I got a copy of the Daily News, and there was a picture on the cover of you and Sal, and the headline: Catch.

Mr. M. GOLDSTEIN: We went to the building where I fell out from the window and he caught me, and he told Mom and I that he kept the jacket with the blood from my nose. He never cleaned it, and he kept it in his closet. His wife said that this was one of the most important days in his life. And, I said, well, his being there for me, of course, was one of the most important days in my life. And he was just so, so happy that we were together again.

(Soundbite of music)

MONTAGNE: Marvin Goldstein and his son Eric at StoryCorps in New York City. Their conversation and all the others in this project will be archived at the Library of Congress. See the newspaper photo that the Goldsteins talked about, and subscribe to the StoryCorps podcast, at npr.org.

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