Authors to discuss unlikely romance at Richmond museum


How likely is it that a Jewish woman who grew up in the Bronx and whose parents were Eastern European immigrants would form a romantic relationship with a man whose father was a high-ranking Nazi?

However strange that scenario sounds, it is what happened when authors Rudi Raab, a retired Berkeley police officer, and Julie Freestone, a former Bay Area reporter, met and began a three-decade journey that changed their lives – and resulted in the novel Stumbling Stone, based on their story.

The authors will talk about their book and their quest to find the truth about Raab’s family history on Sunday, April 7 from 2-4 p.m. at the Richmond Museum of History, 400 Nevin Ave. The event is free and open to the public. It is one of the special events connected to the Pioneers to the Present: Jews of Richmond and Contra Costa exhibit that runs through June 30.

“We are especially pleased to have Rudi and Julie as part of this series because they are long-time Richmond residents and their story is a compelling one about prejudice, reconciliation and love,” says Melinda McCrary, Executive Director of the Museum.

McCrary says the authors will read from their novel and show pictures and documents related to their lives and their families. “It’s quite remarkable that they were able to build a life together and find answers to the question about what Rudi’s family, especially his father, actually did during the Nazi years,” says McCrary.

Another special event that that will be held during the exhibit includes Jewish scholar and author Fred Rosenbaum talking about his book Taking Risks, the remarkable story of Joseph Pell who fought the Nazis – and operated a beloved ice cream store in Richmond. That program is set for Sunday, April 28 at 1 p.m. at the Museum.

For more information and a complete schedule visit

This post is a news media release by the Richmond Museum of History