ב"ה
Saturday, 22 Av, 5781
  |  July 31, 2021

The Woman Named Leah

Shluchim Stories: Rabbi Mendel Rivkin of Chabad-Lubavitch of Louisiana writes about the inexplicable sad story of a Jewish woman named Leah Shpock-Luzovsky. Full Story

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Darlene
March 22, 2016 9:59 pm

Thank you for sharing this tender and poignant story with us. Sara

My memories of Leah!
March 21, 2016 10:58 pm

I absolutely JUST told my roommate I got him a lucky favs bean from a St.Joseph’s Alter & spoke about the bead lady. I saw her all the time in the 70s when I ran a shop on St. Peter. I bought a lucky bead from her & my co-worker distained her. Leah ” cursed” her with bad luck for not buying a bead & funny ( bad) things happened to her the rest of the day! I admired her toughness on the street. I loved our New Orleans Quarter folks that were different ( I was the Duck Girl’s… Read more »

No Negativity in #5
March 20, 2016 11:09 am

There is no negativity in commenter #5’s post. He is simply stating fact. To me he was saving the lady’s dignity by explaining that it shouldn’t be implicated that she was a drug abuser simply because of the time period and location she was in.

smiles and tears evoked for Leah
March 19, 2016 6:07 pm

My responses to this touching story of a life worth honoring and remembering, as all of our lives are worthy of, for we are all the children and our names written in the book of life. No judgement, here. Thanks to the those who assisted so selflessly and condolences to Leah’s brother.

The Bead Lady
March 19, 2016 4:19 pm

For years she made her way through the Quarter offering beads for sale to anyone ..local or tourist…who did not shy away. She definitely added to the stories of those who encountered her. She seemed to be a loner and how wonderful if she could have been reunited with family sooner. RIP Bead Lady.

Leah
March 19, 2016 3:58 pm

How wonderful to hear that the Bead Lady’s family found her.
And how absolutely marvelous to hear her story told for the first time. She sounded like she was speaking in tongues when she spoke but maybe that was her native tongue she was speaking. She walked our streets and spoke to my daughter and I often. Rest in Peace Leah

Leah
March 19, 2016 2:46 pm

I remember this lady. I lived on
New Madison Street in the quarter and saw her every day for years. I am so happy that in the end, those of us who saw her and wondered about her, now know her name. Rest in peace Leah.

Gallerist
March 19, 2016 2:25 pm

I knew La La the Bead Lady when I worked in Vieux Carre galleries in the 80’s. Yes, she was mentally disabled but she was not stupid or unaware. She would ask if you would like to buy a lucky bead. if you answered anything less than $5. she scolded you and turned away. Every season she decorated her football helmet with appropriate colors and trinkets. She never really acknowledged me but she would come into my gallery and hang out at least once a week. I’d ask her how she was doing and she wouldn’t answer but she was… Read more »

a prominent figure passes
March 19, 2016 12:18 pm

Leah, bka The Bead lady, was a very visible and regular fixture in the French Quarter during my 25 years of living in New Orleans. She was always a mystery to those of us who came in contact with her. I saw her frequently and had frequent interaction with her at a cafe where I worked in the early 80’s. She was quite a character and provided us all with many tales to tell about her. I am so happy to hear that her family finally found her and that she was given a respectful burial. This lays to rest… Read more »

Just because be nice one love
March 19, 2016 7:13 am

Love the bead lady a true new Orleans character!

Lady named leah
March 19, 2016 2:32 am

Love the story….she was part of my everyday….leaving and working in the French quarter.she was also known as the helmet lady…

I have wondered what had happened with her...
March 18, 2016 10:50 pm

Now I know. Thank you so much for sharing this story.

There's always a #5....
February 8, 2011 11:14 pm

I agree with #6. A long beautiful story that says so much about the New Orleans community and #5, who obviously knows nothing about anything, has to comment like that.

No one stigmatized her here.. That is the beauty of this story. No matter who she is, no matter what, the obvious incredible New Orleans community shows its kindness every time.

And our condolences to the brother who finally found her.

(#5- Get a life and crawl back in your hole!)

Agree with #5
February 8, 2011 10:55 pm

The implication of drug abuse as being the source of her difficulties is unfair and most probably inaccurate. The onset of several mental illnesses occurs exactly when a person is in their early 20’s. She was obviously someone of high academic standing as the recipient of a full scholarship.
May her neshama have an immediate aliya and may all those involved in bringing about her jewish burial be blessed.

to #5
February 8, 2011 12:16 pm

leave it to you find some kernel of negativity in this story…

thats the one thing you come away with after reading this incredible story?
jaded….sad!

Don't Speculate
February 8, 2011 8:39 am

Sad story. However, the speculation as to drug abuse should be deleted. There are many types of mental illness and people often suffer from serious mental illness that is not caused by drug abuse. For example, there is no evidence that drugs cause schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, although some people suffering from mental illness might turn to drugs because they are more vulnerable or are self-medicating. It is an insult to this woman to try to blame her for her own afflication and represents the stigmatizing of mental illness in some portions of the frum community which then deters people… Read more »

Amazing and powerful
February 7, 2011 8:15 pm

keep up the great work to help every single person – no matter who

Thank you
February 7, 2011 7:57 pm

A very special story

very nice
February 7, 2011 5:17 pm

yshar koach for all that you do there
the rebbe is surely proud

BGR
February 7, 2011 4:54 pm

Beautiful yet sad story

Debby Matassa
August 1, 2019 10:42 am

It is nice to know what happened to the Lucky Bead Lady. Thanks for sharing her story.

Diane
December 6, 2020 9:05 am

Thank you for telling her story.

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