January 18, 2020

Holocaust Survivor and Philanthropist Hedy Orden, 93

Holocaust survivor Hedy Orden (Ordentlich), who with her husband operated an extensive chain of service stations on the West Coast, died on Jan. 14 at 93.

Hedy Orden (nee Adler) was born on April 13, 1926, in Reteag, Romania, the younger of two children in a prominent Jewish family. Her life was interrupted by World War II when she was sent to Auschwitz at age 18. Her parents and grandmother perished during the Holocaust.  

After the war, she met Ted Ordentlich, who proposed marriage after 30 minutes, family members said. The couple was married for 69 years, until Ted’s death in 2015. The couple immigrated to the United States in 1959 with their two young daughters.

In 1960, the couple opened their first service station and welcomed their third daughter. They expanded their business and eventually became the largest private independent owner and operator of service stations on the West Coast.

The couple supported many charitable organizations including Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, LA Opera, the Music Center, the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, Sinai Temple, Jewish National Fund and AIPAC. She had a passion to support aging Holocaust survivors and provide Holocaust education in the U.S. and Israel. In memory of her late husband, she endowed Unistream, a program that fosters entrepreneurial skills for at-risk youth in Israel. She also derived great joy from the many Jewish marriages that resulted from the numerous singles who met their future spouses at the Ted and Hedy Orden Friday Night Live Program at Sinai Temple.

One of her proudest accomplishments was reuniting her extended family and bringing them to the United States, family members said. 

She is survived by daughters Martha (Barry), Judy (Tom), and Helen (Moshe);  grandchildren Daniel (Jessica), Bryan (Raquel), Jacqueline (Adam), Monica (Keith), Jamie (Daniel), Lauren, Michelle (Daniel), Jonathan, Elana (Noah), Elliot and Ariella; and great-grandchildren Jacob, Jack, Benjamin, Madison, Theodore,  Elizabeth, Asher, Charlotte, Juliette, Alexandra, Lucy and Theodore.