Jim’s Journal: My Son, My Brother

Jim's Journal

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to one of the coolest things a Brother can ever do in our fraternity:

I went to my son’s initiation into OUR fraternity.

Ever since Ethan was born and my wife and I received a pledge pin in the mail from AEPi International congratulating us, I’ve been thinking about this day. So much of our Jewish heritage is based on this concept of passing values and traditions on to the next generation – L’dor V’ador – that the simple act of putting my fraternity badge on my son, Ethan, felt like a religious experience.

Ethan has been a part of AEPi since the day he was born. His “uncles”, my fraternity brothers, have been a part of his life since his bris and remain close to him. Last week, he officially joined us as Brothers of AEPi.

Ethan (left) and Jim Fleischer after initiation.

When he left for college at Indiana University at the end of the summer, I knew this day was going to come. When he pledged our Beta Iota chapter, the reality began to hit me. And, then, last week, I had the honor of being at the initiation of Ethan and his 46 pledge brothers. I was thrilled to be joined by Brother Matt Brooks (Brandeis, 1988) as he also initiated his son, Max.

I’m not going to lie. I was an emotional wreck. This was the little boy that I raised, taught how to get dressed, how to drive and play basketball and loved since the moment he was born. And, now, he’s my Brother. Ethan is one of the four most important people in the world to me (tied with his mom and two siblings) and now he’s a member of the other most important thing in my life, AEPi.

L’Dor V’Ador indeed.

AEPi’s legacy policy has always been important to me but now more than ever. I want every Brother to have the opportunity to initiate his son into our great Brotherhood. This policy is what makes us different than any other club or organization. Our fraternity is our family and our family should be our fraternity.

I hope that every alumnus Brother makes sure that he notifies us when his son is going off to college so we can make sure our chapters contact him and that he has a chance to carry on the traditions, values and mission of AEPi.

I’m already looking forward to the prospect when both Ethan and I can initiate my younger son, Spencer, into our Brotherhood.

#AEPiforlife #ProudtobeaPi

Beta Iota Post Initiation

Our fraternity is our family and our family should be our fraternity.