Israel ‘Izzy’ Feldman
Israel “Izzy” Feldman, a serial IT entrepreneur, proud immigrant and strong supporter of Jewish causes, died on June 2. He was 86.
He was born in 1931 in Chernovitz, Romania, now in Ukraine, to an Orthodox Jewish family. His family had deep roots in the Chasidic movement and were direct descendants of the Chozeh M’Lublin, who brought the Chasidic movement to Poland. His Zionist family immigrated to Israel when he was 3 and he grew up in Tel Aviv.
He was proud of his participation in the youth movement supporting the Haganah and at 19 served in the Israeli Air Force during the War of Independence, building communication towers and supervising 50 soldiers. His family later housed and supported relatives who moved to Israel after surviving the Holocaust.
He received a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering and mechanical engineering from the Technion in 1955. Following his graduation, Feldman received the Benjamin Cooper Fellowship to study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he received a master in science degree in industrial management.
Feldman also studied at the Harvard School of Applied Math and The New School for Social Research.
Feldman married Judith Feldman in 1958. They had three sons, Dan, Joel and Ron.
Feldman started his career in the 1950s with information technology pioneers, including Honeywell, MITRE and Univac. He transitioned to senior level IT-related positions in the federal government. In the 1970s, he began creating organizations offering media, training and conference services to connect private sector providers with government users.
He founded Government Computer News, which he sold to Ziff-Davis in the 1980s, and E-Gov which he sold to 101 Communications in 2001.
Feldman was the first Technion graduate to become a Guardian and receive an honorary doctorate. He was on the Board of Governors of the Technion, where he endowed the chair of the Computer Department.
He also supported Camp Ramah and Hadassah, co-founded the Hi-Tech Division of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, was the chair of Israel Bonds and received the Chabad Lamplighter Award.
Feldman was a member of B’nai Israel Congregation in Rockville.
He married Sharon Doner in 2008.
In addition to his wife, his sons and the mother of his sons, he is survived by eight grandchildren: Isaiah, Gabe, Talia, Ethan, Eli, Sadie, Jed and Ilan. He is also survived by his sister, Shoshanah, in Israel.
Harold Lake of Bethesda, beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother, great-uncle, cousin and restauranteur, died June 8. He was 88.
Lake was born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y. He was the eldest of two sons born to the late David and Lillian Lake (née Panster).
Lake created, owned and ran the Zebra Room restaurant for 35 years. He served pizza to local families, the Washington Redskins, 1980 presidential candidate John Anderson, Supreme Court justices and Speaker of the House Carl Albert.
Family was of the utmost importance to Harold. His loving wife of 67 years, Anna Peltin Lake, died in April. Together they raised four boys: Gary (who died in 1973), Steven, Bradley and Richard.
In addition to his sons, he is survived by eight grandchildren, Gregory, Ryan, Devin, Jillian, Marisa, Ben, Gabriel and Ellie; daughters-in-law Maureen and Lisa; son-in-law William; his brother, Jerry, and sister-in-law, Freida; sisters-in-law Shirley and Sandee. He is predeceased by his brother-in-law Izzy.
Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Janice F. Mason
Janice F. Mason, of Silver Spring, died on May 31.
Born in 1929 in Pittsburgh, she was the loving wife of the late David Mason and beloved mother of Melinda (Peter) McArdle, Adam (Shannon) Mason, Jodi (Gary) Cohen and the late Garry Mason; cherished grandmother of Sara, Zac, Amanda, Matt, Jack and Shea.
Mason had a creative soul, spending her early years as a singer and entertainer. She was a talented artist, a beautiful pianist, great cook and excelled in her party planning business and was a visionary in a start-up cellular business.
Mason’s most fulfilling years were as a mother, grandmother and aunt. Her family made her very proud and filled her heart with joy.
Contributions may be made to Montgomery Hospice. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Milton Siegel, of Silver Spring, died on June 4. He was 90.
He was the beloved husband of Sylvia, who died in 2014; loving father of Marci (George) Ward and cherished grandfather of Christopher.
Donations may be made to Montgomery Hospice. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Beverly Zeidenberg, of Rockville, died on June 8.
She was the beloved wife of the late Leonard Zeidenberg; devoted mother of Peter (Angela) Zeidenberg, Erica (Rob Glidden) Zeidenberg and Elizabeth (Tom) Singer; and loving sister of Arline Newman. She is also survived by seven grandchildren.
Contributions may be made to Montgomery Hospice. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Emanuel Zolt, of Silver Spring, died on June 4. He was the beloved husband of Janet Zolt; devoted father of Ed Zolt (Andrea
Glashow) and Jeff (Andrea) Zolt, and also survived by loving grandchildren Danny Zolt, Abby Zolt, Noah Zolt and Dominic Zolt.
Contributions may be made to a charity of choice. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Otto Warmbier, U.S. student detained in North Korea, dies
Otto Warmbier, an American student who was held in North Korea for over 17 months and returned home comatose to Ohio last week, has died. He was 22.
“It is our sad duty to report that our son, Otto Warmbier, has completed his journey home,” Warmbier’s family told ABC News on Monday. “Surrounded by his loving family, Otto died today at 2:20 p.m.”
The Cincinnati native and University of Virginia undergraduate was traveling on a student tour of North Korea last year when he was arrested and sentenced to 15 years of hard labor for taking down a propaganda poster.
When he was released last week in a coma, doctors said that all regions of Warmbier’s brain had suffered extensive damage.
“It would be easy at a moment like this to focus on all that we lost — future time that won’t be spent with a warm, engaging, brilliant young man whose curiosity and enthusiasm for life knew no bounds,” the family said in a statement. “But we choose to focus on the time we were given to be with this remarkable person.”
JTA reported last week that Warmbier was active at the University of Virginia Hillel after participating in a Birthright trip to Israel in 2014.
The university’s Hillel director, Rabbi Jake Rubin, called him “a beloved member of our Hillel community.”
Albert H. Erlick, a longtime editor of the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent and, after his retirement, acting editor at Washington Jewish Week, died May 24. He was 88.
In 1998, four years after his retirement from the Exponent, he began commuting weekly between Philadelphia and Rockville to lead Washington Jewish Week while its owner searched for a permanent editor. His stint in Washington lasted a year.
“When Al came to Washington Jewish Week, he was a living legend in this business,” said Craig Burke, publisher and chief executive officer of Mid-Atlantic Media, which publishes Washington Jewish Week. “We were able to take advantage of his wealth of knowledge and experience. We treasure the time we had with him.”
“Al was a true gentleman,” said Aaron Leibel, who was then the newspaper’s arts editor and copy editor. “What I recall most about him was his passion for journalism, always telling the staff how much fun it was to put out a newspaper.”
He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on July 19, 1928, and moved to Philadelphia in 1935, where he attended Temple University. At the end of World War II, he served with the first occupational troops in Japan under Gen. Douglas MacArthur as a member of the office staff.
Philadelphia was his home until 2015, when he and his wife, Barbara, moved to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to be close to their daughter.
Erlick won multiple journalism awards for a series of editorials on the search for peace in the Middle East and for a series of articles on his visit to refuseniks in the former Soviet Union.
He was also the recipient of the American Jewish Press Association’s annual award for journalistic integrity. He interviewed world leaders from around the globe including multiple U.S presidents at the White House, and participated in many panels relating to political, social and religious unrest at home and abroad.
Before he worked at the Exponent, where he served for 24 years, Erlick edited the weekly Motion Picture Exhibitor magazine for over a decade. He also co-founded the Center City Philadelphian in 1959, which went on to become the Philadelphia Magazine.
All the while, he participated in his other lifelong love, the theater. He toured with national productions of “The Fantasticks” and “Julius Caesar,” among others. At age 87, he performed in Florida Children’s Theatre’s family series production of “Seussical” and, at 88, in its version of “Mary Poppins.”
A lifelong baseball enthusiast, Erlick never stopped rooting for the Cleveland Indians, with the Phillies a close second.
He is survived by his wife, Barbara, and their children Janet, of Fort Lauderdale, and Kenneth, of Portland, Ore.; grandchildren Jeremy, Benjamin, Gabriel, Marcus and Jason. He is also survived by his sister, friend and biggest fan, Mickey Zacher; and his brother, Samuel Dolnick, and their children.
Contributions may be made to Florida Children’s Theatre (flct.org) or to the International Center for Journalists (icjf.org).
Eliezer Jaffe, father of Israeli social work, dies
Eliezer Jaffe, considered a father of social work in Israel, has died at the age of 83.
Jaffe, who died on May 25, was a founder of Israel’s first academic school of social work, the Paul Baerwald School of Social Work at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
A professor of social work specializing in philanthropy and nonprofit management, he was the first Centraid-L. Jacques Menard Professor for the Study of Nonprofit Organizations, Volunteering and Philanthropy at Hebrew University and co-chairman of the university’s Center for the Study of Philanthropy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He was a professor emeritus at Hebrew University at the time of his death.
More than a week before his death, Jaffe was presented with the Bonei Zion Prize for lifetime achievement awarded annually by Nefesh B’Nefesh to immigrants from English-speaking countries in recognition of their significant contributions to Israel.
Jaffe immigrated to Israel from Cleveland, Ohio in 1960, three years after he spent time in Israel volunteering in the immigrant transit camps.
Between 1970 and 1972, at the request of Mayor Teddy Kollek, he headed the Jerusalem Municipal Department of Family and Community Services, introducing major administrative, conceptual and program reforms, that continue to be observed throughout the country today.
He also served as a consultant to several government ministerial committees dealing with topics such as poverty and disadvantaged youth, and headed by the sitting prime minister or president.
He founded a website and wrote a book both titled: “Giving Wisely: The Israel Guide to Non-Profit Organizations.” The book contained profiles of nearly 30,000 Israeli and nonprofit organizations. The website was closed down about six years ago, after the Israeli government took over the function of vetting nonprofits.
Jaffe founded the Israel Free Loan Association, which assisted the needy and new immigrants with interest-free loans; he also spent time working out personal repayment plans with them that also allowed others to benefit from such loans.
He is survived by his four children, grandchildren and other family members.
—JTA News and Features
Betty Ann Weintraub
Betty Ann Weintraub, of Chevy Chase, died on May 29.
She was the beloved wife of Alan M. Weintraub; devoted mother of Jeffrey (Cassandra) Weintraub, Andrew (Joanne) Weintraub and Lisa (Edgar) Bridges; loving sister of the late Albert Cohn; cherished grandmother of Racheland Alex Weintraub, Caleb (Amber) Weintraub, Noah (Brigid) Weintraub, Eliza Weintraub, Julian and Bernadette Bridges; loving great-grandmother of Finn Seneca Weintraub.
Also survived by many loving relatives. Contributions may be made to The Women’s Board of the American Heart Association or Washington
Hebrew Congregation. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care. n
Rabbi Jonathan Eichhorn, 80, dies
He attended Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati and Adelphi University in Garden City, N.Y.
He served as an Army chaplain from 1961 to 1965, and was stationed in Germany. He was a congregational rabbi at Temple Emanuel in Kingston, N.Y., for 36 years before retiring in 2001. He also served part time as a New York State prison chaplain for 30 years.
He is survived by his wife, Suzanne Eichhorn, of Chevy Chase; children Deborah Eichhorn (Steve Snyder), of Bethesda; Sharon Sokolik (David), of Dunwoody, Ga.; Daniel Eichhorn (Debra), of Montvale, N.J; and grandchildren Ari and Rebecca Snyder of Bethesda, Ben and Hannah Sokolik of Dunwoody, and Cooper and Simon Eichhorn of Montvale.
Contributions may be made to JSSA Hospice in Rockville, Autism NJ in Robbinsville, N.J., and Temple Sinai in Washington.
Barbara Ann Kasoff
Barbara Ann Kasoff, of San Francisco, died on May 23. She was 74 years old.
Her advocacy work with the National Association of Women Business Owners and her participation in the 1986 White House Conference on Small Business led to her co-founding Women Impacting Public Policy in 2001. WIPP is a nonpartisan organization which educates and advocates on behalf of women-owned businesses. She served as WIPP’s president for nine years.
In 2011, she served as a U.S. delegate to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum. She also served on boards for Women Business Owners Corporation, SCORE Pacific Gas & Electric and Detroit Edison Community Relations Board. In addition, she served on the National Women’s Business Council, representing WIPP and its partner organizations.
When she wasn’t working, Kasoff enjoyed traveling, spending time with family and friends, and reading.
She is survived by her husband, Marvin Kasoff, of San Francisco; her children Ben and Barbi Kasoff, of Alexandria and Beverly Hills, Mich.; Jon Kasoff, of Troy, Mich.; Danny and Pam Kasoff, of San Francisco; as well as grandchildren Maddy, Josh, Brooke, Drew, Tiffany, Mason, Ariel, Jonah and Jared.
Melvin Lenkin died in his sleep on May 27 in Chevy Chase.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 68 years, Thelma Z. Lenkin, along with his loving children Edward (Roselin) and Judy (Mark Lerner), and his treasured grandchildren Lauren Lerner-Naft (Noah Naft), Jonathan Lerner (Ilyse), Jacob Lerner, Jordan Lenkin and Grady Lenkin. He is predeceased by his sister, Natalie Clayman, brother, Lawrence Lenkin, and his daughter, Michele May Lenkin.
He was born in Washington and was a lifelong resident. He graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1945 and attended George Washington University after serving in the Merchant Marine.
In 2003, B’nai Israel Congregation in Rockville renovated its building following a $15 million capital campaign. The addition was named the Thelma and Melvin Lenkin Educational and Activities Center.
Contributions may be made to the Jewish Foundation for Group Homes’ Lenkin Family Fund or a charity of your choice.
Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Jacques Fein, beloved husband, father and grandfather, died peacefully on May 11, 2017 at Gilchrist Hospice Care in Howard County, Maryland after suffering a stroke at the age of 78. Jacques is survived by his wife, Judee Iliff, his sister, Annette Fein and his children and their spouses: Rachel (Lee) Burrows, Matt (Kelly) Fein and Laura (David) Alima. Jacques was a Pipa, Grandpa, and Grand Pere to his five grandchildren who were incredibly special to him — Sam and Zach Burrows, Adrienne Fein, and Maggie and Max Alima.
Jacques was born in Paris, France, in 1938 and led a remarkable life. Jacques often spoke of having “five families” — something that truly shaped who he was. Family one: His birth parents, Szmul and Rojsa Karpik, a Jewish couple originally from Poland who immigrated to France in the hopes of staying safe during World War II. As the Nazi threat grew, the Karpiks had the courage to send their two young children, Jacques (age 3-and-a-half) and Annette (age 1-and-a-half) into hiding. Family two: The Catholic family who hid Jacques and his sister during the war for close to three years, keeping them safe, healthy and alive. During this time, Jacques’ parents were murdered at Auschwitz concentration camp. Family three: After the war, Jacques and his sister were placed in two OSE orphanages (in Brittany and outside of Paris) with many other children who survived the war. Jacques remembers this as a happy time, free from the threat of Nazi soldiers. Family four: Rose and Harry Fein, the Jewish couple who adopted Jacques and Annette in 1948 and brought them to New Jersey, raising them as “regular” American kids. Jacques arrived at Ellis Island when he was 10, not knowing any English, but quickly acclimated to his new home, family and country. Family five: Jacques had two children, Rachel and Matthew, from his first marriage, and settled in Columbia, Md., in 1970. Jacques remarried in 1986 to Judee Iliff, welcoming to his life her daughter Laura.
Jacques attended Clark University, followed by Johns Hopkins University for graduate studies in Computer Sciences. Jacques joined CSC (Computer Sciences Corporation) in the early 1970s, where he worked on many projects, including the Space Program, for more than 35 years. Jacques and Judee were very active in the Jewish community and loved living in Howard County. In 2014, Jacques retired, allowing him to spend more time with his grandchildren and volunteering for numerous organizations.
Jacques dedicated his adult life to “payback” — which was his phrase for giving back to the community — as a way to repay the kindness of all the people who saved him and his sister during and after the War. Jacques’ community activities and accomplishments were plentiful. Just to name a few: He served as a past president of the Jewish Federation of Howard County, was a founder of the World Federation of Jewish Holocaust Child Survivors, was a weekly volunteer at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, frequently spoke to groups and children at schools about his Holocaust experience and was co-president/treasurer of OSE-USA. In 2011, Jacques was honored as Howard County Volunteer of the Year.
In honor of Jacques’ remarkable commitment to helping others, in lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in his name to one of the following organizations: Friends and Alumni of OSE-USA, c/o Norbert Bikales, 3408 Pointe Gate Drive, Livingston, NJ 07039 ose-france.org, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, 100 Raoul Wallenberg Place SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2126 ushmm.org or Jewish Federation of Howard County, 10630 Little Patuxent Parkway, Suite 400, Columbia, MD 21044 jewishhowardcounty.org.
Special thank you to Gilchrist Hospice Care of Howard County, who treated Jacques and his family with kindness, respect, and dignity throughout this difficult process.
Don Peretz, Middle East scholar, veteran, activist, dies at 94
Don Peretz, a leading scholar on the Arab-Israel conflict and Palestinian refugees at SUNY Binghamton, died on April 29 in Mitchellville. He was 94.
Peretz retired as professor emeritus from SUNY Binghamton in 1992. He started his teaching career there in 1966. He was the director of the Southwest Asia North Africa Program and the author of “Israel and the Palestinian Refugees,” an academic study of the 1948 Palestinian refugees. He authored 11 other books and more than 300 articles for various journals.
Peretz was a fellow at the United States Institute of Peace and a contributor to the Middle East Institute. He graduated from the University of Minnesota, and received his doctorate from Columbia University. He was awarded a Ford Foundation grant to study the Arab refugee problem from 1952 to 1954.
Peretz studied Japanese at the University of Minnesota and served with the Army as a Japanese interpreter for a naval medical unit in Okinawa, mostly treating civilians. “Thousands of them [Okinawans] were wounded during the American invasion,”
Peretz recounted. “Many of them had hidden in caves, and to get them out, the U.S. Army used white phosphorous bombs.” The experience, he said, “only reinforced my opposition to the war and the impact that it had on noncombatants.” He was discharged after the Japanese surrender in 1945.
In 1949, Peretz applied to work with the American Friends Service Committee (Quakers), which the United Nations selected to provide relief to the Palestinian refugees. He became head of relief work in the city of Acre and western Galilee. Peretz recounted that “some people in the Jewish community said, ‘How can a Jew be working for the Arabs like that?’ He responded, “There had to be accommodation between Jews and Arabs — especially within the borders, if there was ever to be peace.”
In the 1950s, Peretz accompanied American Socialist leader Norman Thomas on a Mideast tour to visit socialist party leaders throughout the region, with Peretz providing counsel on Jewish affairs. They met Arab leaders, including Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nassar.
Peretz was born in 1922 in Baltimore to Haim Peretz and Josephine Lasser Peretz.
He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Maya Peretz, his daughter Debbie Peretz (Marcus Brandt), and sons Jonathan Chance and Ervin Peretz (Pauline Cooper), grandson Jonah and cousins Edith and Hanan Schaham.
Donations can be sent to the New Israel Fund or American Friends Service Committee.