Opinion | Giving Away Mom’s Stuff

To the Editor:

Vanessa Friedman (Here to Help, Jan. 14) advises readers to “re-tailor” or “divest” no longer wanted clothing to resale sites. I have a better suggestion: Give it all away.

When my mother died in 2017, I found hundreds of dresses, jewelry, unworn shoes and more, in her closets. I set out on a mission to give everything away. Friends received necklaces that matched their styles; nine boxes of clothing were sent to a village in Ghana; dresses, sweaters and books were donated to a prison in upstate New York, for women who will soon be released.

Antique candlesticks found their way to the New York Tenement Museum; paintings, plants, furniture and knickknacks were given to Mom’s caregivers and neighbors. Dishes, couches and silverware went to young friends moving into their first apartments. Coats and blankets were distributed to those with neither.

It felt great to know that Mom’s possessions were being used by people who need them or who love them. It keeps her legacy alive, and brings me so much satisfaction. Just give!

Penny Prince

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