I am your cousin Janet. My sister Susan and I are daughters of Esther (nickname Stella) Kapust Crayne (she died April 4, 2005). Leo was her brother. They had 2 sisters. one. Miriam, passed away about 10-15 years ago. Libby is hanging in there and lives in Florida.
Your greatgrandmother, Celia, couldn't remember her birthday, but I found two social security numbers for her and one indicates (if i remember correctly) that she was born in 1897. Celia came over here first with her father, and then they earned money for the others to come over. She had met someone named Kapust in Russia and they eventually got together in Chicago. She had been very active in the Jewish Bund in Mozyr (now White Russia, but then part of Russia/Ukraine), but their neightbor came by when celia was out and told her mother that the secret police were looking for Celia. So her mother burned all of Celia's political literature and sent Celia to Kiev to live with her mother's twin sister. That was where Celia learned how to sew and embroider--which was the way that she earned money in the US. The family settled in Chicago, and then bought a farm in Oshtemo, outside of Kalamazoo. I am going there soon to see if there are any records of the family. Libby was born in Kalamazoo, and Esther was rushed to the hospital in Kalamazoo when she stepped on a rusty nail. They also lived on a farm in Cook County--I believe that was before the Kalamazoo farm. After they left the second farm, they moved to NY.
One night about 13 years ago I got a phone call from my mother (Esther) because she woke up with a start when she began singing in her sleep. She couldn't recall the tune, but she repeated the words to me. I knew what she was saying, because I have a background in Russian and what she recitred to me was a poem by a famous Russian poet--sung as a lullaby by Russians. Celia and the other Faktors (her family name) were raised on a spa-estate owned by a doctor, and they had the advantage of being taught by tutors of the residents. Celia had voice training, and that was probably how my mother heard that song. Esther was also the oldest of all the children. Please let me know if there is anything else that you want to know.