Real Name: Judy Anderson
Case: Lost Friend
Location: Cozumel, Mexico
Details: Critically acclaimed chef Moises Treves is searching for a friend and benefactor, Judy Anderson, who helped him start his first restaurant decades ago. In the mid-1970s, Moises was a day cook at a small taco stand on the island of Cozumel, Mexico, and had a reputation of making the best tacos in town. One of his favorite customers was Judy, an American school teacher who visited the island several times.
Moises vividly remembers Judy's final visit in 1977, when she asked him to take her to the mainland to visit ancient ruins. Moises agreed and the next day he and Judy went on a day long excursion to the Mayan pyramids in the Yucatan Peninsula. Around noon, they went to lunch and communicated with each other as best they could in broken English. While at lunch, Judy asked Moises if he wanted to open his restaurant, and he said that it was his dream, but he didn't have the money for it. Judy responded by saying, "Such is Life", and Moises liked the saying, and began to have an idea.
Then, as the day ended, it was time for the two to say goodbye, as Moises would take a ferry back to the island while Judy went to the airport to take a flight back to the United States. But before she left, Judy gave Moises and envelope and told him not to open it until she left. When he did open the envelope, Moises was stunned to find five $100 bills and a letter that said, "Dear Moises. Go make 'Such is Life' happen. Love Judy," and within a month, Moises did just that, opening a small restaurant in Cozumel, which, of course, he named "Such is Life". Moises eagerly waited for Judy's next trip back to the island to see the restaurant, but he never saw her again.
Twenty years later, Moises is a successful chef in the United States with two award-winning restaurants in Arizona, both named, "Such is Life". Moises and his family, who now live in Scottsdale, Arizona, want to thank Judy Anderson for her kindness and generosity.
Extra Notes: The case was featured as a part of the May 16, 1997 episode; a full update aired on Spike.
Results: Solved. On Monday, May 19, 1997, Moises's benefactor Judy, who had watched the broadcast, called the phone center and soon got in contact with Moises. Judy Friedkin, whose last name Moises remembered incorrectly, was surprised at how much of an impact her gift gave on him, and was thrilled to learn of his success.
A few weeks later, Judy traveled to Phoenix, Arizona, where she was reunited with Moises at Moises's restaurant "Such is Life." Sadly, he passed away in 2014. His restaurant is now operating under the name "Asi Es La Vida".
- Moises Treves on Unsolved Archive
- Such is Life's menu is both exotic and homey
- Mexican regional cuisine pioneer Moises Treves has died
- Moises Treves, Phoenix Mexican Cuisine Pioneer, Has Died
- “Such Is Life,” The Kindness Of Strangers, And The Wonderful Ethics Saga Of Moises Treves And Judy Anderson
- SitcomsOnline Post by Judy Friedkin