The Bridges My Father Built
A Lifelong Educator, He Left Behind Many Legacies—Including a Suspension Bridge and a Bust of JFK I Spent Years Trying to Find
In the 1960s, my father’s crowning achievement was building, entirely by hand, a 60-foot steel suspension bridge over the lake at Camp Pontiac, the summer camp his family owned in Copake, New York.
My dad, Norman Horowitz, had no engineering training, just a love for the beauty and symmetry of bridges. Using an old World War I Army Manual, steel from the local junkyard, and cobblestones he foraged near his home in the Bronx, he spent four years building the bridge. When it was finished, it connected the camp’s main campus with the manmade “Animal Island,” which, back in the day, housed a petting zoo.
My dad, whose favorite book was Profiles in Courage, dedicated his bridge to the late President John F. Kennedy, installing at its foot a podium with a bust of JFK that was a replica of the famous Robert Berks sculpture at the Kennedy Center ...