Thursday, August 23, 2012 | return to: lifecycles, deaths



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Max Drimmer

Resident of Burlingame

Max Drimmer passed away August 14, 2012 at the age of 92. He was born on March 25, 1920 to Moritz and Fannie Drimmer in Magdeburg, Germany. Max was a Holocaust survivor, spending a total of 5 years in both Sachsenhausen and the Auschwitz death camp. In 1944, Max escaped from Auschwitz with his best friend Herman Shine and returned to Berlin. Max was aided by a Polish gentile, Josef Wrona, who deserves special recognition here, for without his assistance in the escape plot, Max may not have survived.

Gdeaths_mugAfter the war, he married his sweetheart Herta Zowe and moved to the United States to start a family and a career as a baker and ultimately was a very successful plumbing contractor. Max lived in San Francisco for 35 years before moving to Burlingame, where he resided for the past 31 years. Max was married to his wife Herta for 53 wonderful years until Herta, our “Nana,” passed away in 1999.

Lovingly known as “Baba” to his immediate family, Max is survived by his two sons, Jack and Jeff, Jeff’s wife Vivienne, his grandchildren, Jim, Jennifer, her husband Mike, Julia, Joe, and his great grandson and pride and joy, Landon. Max lived for his family and was a true patriarch, dispensing comfort, advice and guidance to his children gleaned from a well-lived life and the wealth of experience that came along with it. Max also had substantial family in the San Francisco Bay Area and a large contingent of family in Israel with whom he was in frequent contact. Max is deeply missed and will be in our hearts and minds, every day, and for the rest of our lives.

In his spare time, Max kept active, volunteering at the Tourist Information Center in downtown San Francisco, San Francisco airport, and in speaking engagements related to the Holocaust. Max was a routine attendee at Holocaust survivor conferences, was recognized numerous times by the California Legislature for his experiences, and gave videotaped and oral testimonies for the benefit of the Holocaust museums in Washington, D.C., as well as the Auschwitz and Sachsenhausen museums. He enjoyed working out at the gym, attending his synagogue, Congregation B’nai Emunah, on Saturdays and holidays, and visiting with family and friends. Max took particular pleasure in spending time with his girlfriend Linda Semi, a loving friend and travel companion. Linda is truly a blessing to our entire family and will be forever.

Funeral services were held on Sunday, August 19, 2012 at Sinai Memorial Chapel.

Sinai Memorial Chapel

Paul Martin Fish


He passed away unexpectedly after a brief illness. Paul was the beloved husband of Charlotte, devoted father to sons David and Marshall, caring uncle to many nieces and nephews. He is also survived by his sister, June “Mitzie” Lieberman (husband Fred).

When he was eight years old, his family moved from Chicago to San Francisco. He grew up in the Jewish neighborhood around McAllister Street and enjoyed those formative years. He attended Lowell High and S.F. State. As an adult, every time he went to downtown San Francisco, people would stop him to say hello. It seemed he knew everyone and they enjoyed knowing him.

He liked to brag that he would be married 58 years this September. When first married, Paul and Charlotte lived in the Westlake area of Daly City before settling in San Mateo.

He loved basketball, and shared stories of playing hoops as an enlisted soldier in the Army. At various times, he coached teams at the S.F. Jewish Center and Congregation Beth Jacob in Redwood City.

Before retirement, he was a dedicated insurance agent for many years. Prior to that career, he was a lithographer and took great pride in the color prints he produced.

Funeral services were held Thursday, August 23 in the Chapel at Eternal Home Cemetery in Colma.

May his memory always be a blessing.

Sinai Memorial Chapel


Henry Hoexter

Henry Hoexter (Hank) passed away peacefully August 15, 2012 in Palo Alto, California, after suffering a massive stroke August 2. Born in 1922 in Frankfurt-on-Main in Germany, he was a Holocaust survivor who loved the United States for providing refuge at the age of 16. A longtime resident of Berkeley, Hank leaves his beloved wife of 65 years, Mary; son David and wife Judie; grandsons David and wife, Diana, Michael, and Jonas and wife Rachel; and great-grandchildren Maya, Alex, Ben, Cosimo and Forrest. His final refuge was the Moldaw Family Residences in Palo Alto, where he and Mary moved in 2010 and greatly enjoyed the friendship of fellow residents.

Henry and Mary were members of Congregation Beth El in Berkeley, where he served on the Board in various capacities, including as vice president. He loved his work as an electrical engineer at PG&E. He was a quiet, undemanding man, always available for support but never pushing himself or his opinions onto others.

Donations to your favorite charity would be most appreciated in lieu of flowers. A couple of Henry’s favorites were the Nature Conservancy and the Magnes Museum in Berkeley (where he volunteered for decades). The family wishes to express its thanks to Pathways Hospice, whose staff provided loving and caring support in Henry’s final days.

A memorial service was held at the Moldaw Family Residences on August 19.

Sinai Memorial Chapel

Rabbi Harry Levenberg, 89, of Mountain View, California, passed away on August 6, 2012 after a brief illness. He was born in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and left at age 13 to attend a yeshiva in Chicago, where he later graduated from Roosevelt College. He subsequently graduated from the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York. He also served as a Jewish chaplain in Japan during the Korean War. Rabbi Levenberg was the Jewish chaplain for the state mental hospitals and the VA hospitals for many years. He previously had served as rabbi for congregations in Southern California, Richmond and Palo Alto.

Rabbi Levenberg is survived by his devoted wife, Idelle, children Tamara (Jim) Reus, Michelle Levenberg, Jeremy (Jen) Levenberg, his beloved grandchildren, Natasha Reus and Noah Levenberg, and his devoted friends, the Talesnick Family.

Harry never met a stranger; everyone he met instantly became his friend.


Irving Rabin

The Jewish Community has lost one of its most innovative leaders. Irving Rabin was born in San Francisco May 11, 1930 and passed away at his Tiburon home August 15, 2012. He was the founder and CEO of Rabin Worldwide, an international industrial auction company. With his partners, he owned Butterfield & Butterfield, which was acquired by eBay in 1999. Irving was co-founder and first president of Young Adult Division (YAD) of the Jewish Federation, which has been responsible for thousands of Jewish marriages, and founder and first president of Jewish Vocational Services. He helped to acquire the land for Menorah Park and was its first president. He was president of the Magnes Museum of Judaica during its most crucial period, working hard to preserve its place among the great museums of the Bay Area. He served on countless boards and put his amazing energy into many other Jewish charities.

Gdeaths_irv_small_sizeIrving is survived by his wife, Varda, daughter Shira Rabin Weissman and her husband Daniel Weissman, son Ariel and his wife Sarah Buchwalter Rabin, daughter Orlee Rabin and her husband David Shlachter, and son Daniel Rabin. He is survived by his sister Millie Reese and was predeceased by his brothers David, Sol, and Henry Rabin. Irving is also the proud grandfather of Levi and Yael Weissman. He is mourned by many nieces, nephews, cousins and numerous friends.

Funeral services were held at Congregation Beth Sholom. Contributions can be made to Congregation Beth Sholom in San Francisco, Congregation Kol Shofar in Tiburon, or the Magnes Museum in Berkeley.

Sinai Memorial Chapel


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