Obituaries: Jan. 4-10

Barbara Lee Adler died Nov. 3 at 80. Survived by husband Donald; sons John (Alisa), Mitchell (Vicki), Jeffrey (Beverly); 5 grandchildren. Hillside

Sheldon Becker died Nov. 4 at 82. Survived by wife Flora; son Michael. Mount Sinai

Olga Carvel died Nov. 5 at 94. Survived by daughter Carol; son Steven (Linda); 3 grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Max Drucker died Nov. 4 at 100. Survived by son Gary (Rebecca). Malinow and Silverman

Sharon Felder died Nov. 4 at 59. Survived by husband James; daughter Francine Felder Hudson; sons Mathew, Andrew; 2 grandchildren; mother Marilyn; brother Scott Garber. Malinow and Silverman

Harold Alan Greenberg died Nov. 8 at 61. Survived by former wife Joyce; daughter Britney (David) Greenberg-Pilcer; son Glenn; sister Anne Scheinrock; brothers Steve (Michelle), Rick (Melinda) Brodsly; companion Laurie Rauch. Hillside

Florence Halperin died Nov. 3 at 94. Survived by daughter Isabel (Eric) Lane; son Leslie; 3 grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Max Helfand died Nov. 5 at 97. Survived by wife Lillian; sons Barry (Tina), Kenneth, Wayne; 7 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; sister Esther Luskin. Mount Sinai

Eva Jancu died Nov. 3 at 94. Survived by daughter Suzanne (Howard) Jaffee; stepdaughter Miriam (Sheldon) Baer; 5 grandchildren; 6 great-grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Lev Katrikh died Nov. 3 at 92. Survived by wife Donya; sons Solomon (Nelly), Boris. Mount Sinai

Henry Kline died Nov. 8 at 83. Survived by wife Jacqueline; daughter Millie Crystal; 2 grandchildren; brother Richard. Hillside

Celine Mintz died Nov. 8 at 74. Survived by husband Gary; daughter Dana (Andrew) Gumaer; sons Mark (Andrea) Weintz, Ron (Jessica), Russell; 6 grandchildren; sisters Sonia (Larry) Lictenstein, Lana (Michael) Luftman. Mount Sinai

Geraldine Peretz died Nov. 4 at 80. Survived by daughters Cheryl, Faith (Jerry) Retsky, Debbie (Moshe) Berger, Hope Denham; sons Marvin, Richard (Ilasna), Wayne; 6 grandchildren; 1 great-grandchild; sister Roberta. Mount Sinai

Carole A. Pump died Nov. 7 at 79. Survived by sons Dana (Leah), David (Ubelia); 2 grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Lawrence Ramer died Nov. 2 at 84. Survived by wife Ina Lee; son Douglas (Michelle); 3 grandchildren; brother Bruce (Madeline). Hillside

Lois Roston died Nov. 10 at 87. Survived by husband Ellsworth; daughter Janet; son Bob; 8 grandchildren; 8 great-grandchildren. Hillside

Linda Sacks died Nov. 5 at 68. Survived by daughter Melanie (David) Afromsky; son Gregory (Angela); 3 grandchildren; sisters Gina
Swenson, Claudia Bautzer. Mount Sinai

Helen Scheinrock died Nov. 6 at 90. Survived by son Jeffrey; 6 grandchildren; 7 great-grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Dorothy Schiffer died Nov. 7 at 85. Survived by daughter Harriet (Mac) Schiffer Scott; son Michael; 4 grandchildren. Malinow and Silverman

Harriet Shaps died Nov. 10 at 91. Survived by sons Steven, Philip; 1 grandchild. Mount Sinai

Laura Sherman died Nov. 6 at 85. Survived by daughters Kathy, Leslie; 3 grandchildren. Hillside

Irwin Siegel died Nov. 9 at 87. Survived by wife Lillyan; daughter Terri (Laurence) Bryant; 2 grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Rachel Smith died Nov. 6 at 86. Survived by daughter Myra Greenspun. Malinow and Silverman

Dr. Robert Stivelman died Nov. 7 at 89. Survived by sons William, John. Malinow and Silverman

Carmen Warschaw died Nov. 6 at 95. Survived by daughters Hope (John Law), Susan (Carl) Robertson; 3 grandchildren; 2 great-grandchildren. Malinow and Silverman

Marvin C. White died Nov. 7 at 91. Survived by wife Marge; daughter Pamela (Ronald) Coen; son Steven (Angela); 4 grandchildren; 2 great-grandchildren. Mount Sinai

George Winard died Nov. 10 at 93. Survived by wife Marilyn; daughter Judy (Ron) Winard Hirsty; son Robert (Esther); 4 grandchildren. Mount Sinai

Lea Zonen died Nov. 2 at 89. Survived by daughter Myra (Ian) Paige; son Ronald (Louise); 3 grandchildren; 1 great-grandson; sister Sharel Krimsky. Mount Sinai

Calif. Supreme Court upholds lawsuit against Jewish cemetery firm

The California Supreme Court upheld class-action status for a lawsuit alleging gross misconduct by a Jewish funeral services provider that had paid a $100 million settlement over similar misconduct.

On July 23, the court upheld a lower-court ruling on the suit against Texas-based Service Corp. International (SCI) alleging mass desecration of grave sites at a Jewish cemetery in Mission Hills, Calif., clearing the way for families to collectively seek hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys have estimated damages at more than $500 million. A trial was scheduled for Oct. 15.

The lawsuit, filed in September 2009, claims that SCI and its employees purposely desecrated hundreds of Jewish graves and improperly disposed of human remains and bones in mass graves in order to make room for new burials, the Los Angeles Daily News reported. 

The lawsuit alleges that groundskeepers were repeatedly instructed by cemetery management to secretly break concrete vaults with a backhoe and remove, dump and discard the human remains — including human skulls — to make room for new burials in the interest of increased profits.

In 2003, SCI agreed to a $100 million settlement with Menorah Gardens in Southwest Ranches, Fla., after being accused of misplacing bodies, smashing vaults and overselling plots at its graveyards near Palm Beach Gardens and Fort Lauderdale.

SCI, along with other companies, also is facing a $200 million lawsuit in Florida for desecrating burial plots and placing the wrong bodies in several grave sites.

Atlantic City Jewish cemetery vandalized

Some 15 gravestones were toppled in a Jewish cemetery in Atlantic City, N.J.

The attack on the Rodef Sholom Cemetery reportedly took place just before the Memorial Day holiday weekend, according to the Press of Atlantic City. Police believe that more than one vandal was involved because of the heaviness of the gravestones but have no suspects.

The damage to the gravestones is fixable but will be expensive because large cranes are needed to lift the stones, the Press reported. Relatives of the deceased will be notified of the damages.

The cemetery reportedly is often a spot for drinking and drug use.

Cemetery groundskeeper Dennis Kraus told the Press that he didn’t think it was a hate crime against the Jewish people.

“I think it’s a bunch of people who probably got doped up or drunk and figured they could start knocking over stones,” he said. “It’s ridiculous, where people can’t even lay in a cemetery and rest in peace.”

Similar incidents of vandalism have occurred at the cemetery and elsewhere in the area. In 2006, vandals overturned 35 gravestones at the Rodef Sholom Cemetery, and another 20 at a nearby cemetery. The perpretrators, who were intoxicated while committing the crime, received fines and jail time.