Gerald Aptekar passed away on November 23, 2009 (age 90) peacefully at the Jewish Home in San Francisco. His optimistic disposition made him an inspiration and a joy to be with. He loved people and they found him interesting and full of adventure. He traveled widely including an expedition to Cameroon and a dental mission to Guatemala. Born and raised in Detroit, he had a successful career as a dentist and orthodontist until his retirement in 1982. He moved to Scottsdale, AZ with Jane, his wife of 68 years until this April when they came to the Bay Area to be near family.

Jerry was a graduate of the University of Michigan Dental school where he also taught. He married his college sweetheart, Jane Schkloven, on April 16, 1941. He served in the military as a dentist caring for soldiers and interned Japanese citizens. He had an enthusiastic joie-de-vivre that led him to collect African art, antique cars and modern sculpture. He loved to cook, travel, drink fine wine and play tennis and golf.

He is survived by his family to whom he was intensely committed: His wife Jane Aptekar; his sons Donald (Harriet Moyer) of Denver, Colorado; and Robert (Judy) of Los Altos Hills, Ca., 5 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. Contributions may be made to the Jewish Home at 302 Silver Ave. in San Francisco.

Allie Rae Edelsberg, 23, cherished daughter of Leslie (nee Grand) and Jim Joseph Foundation Executive Director Dr. Charles “Chip” Edelsberg of Alameda; loving sister of Zack of Alameda and Eric of Chicago; devoted granddaughter of Barbara Clough, the late Helen and Julius Edelsberg and Marvin Grand; step-granddaughter of Barbara Grand; beloved niece of Lisa Edelsberg, Marly and Ronald Stahl, Stevie and Bob Lubell; dear cousin to Lauren.

Allie Rae died in Cleveland, Ohio, on Dec. 4 after being struck by a car when she was starting to cross the street.

Services were held Dec. 6 at 2 p.m. at Temple-Tifereth Israel, 26000 Shaker Blvd., Beachwood, Ohio. Interment at Mayfield Cemetery. Family received friends at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. C. Stark in Orange.

Friends who wish may contribute to Bellefaire JCB, 22001 Fairmount Blvd., Cleveland, OH or the Animal Protective League, 1729 Willey Ave., Cleveland, OH 44113.

Helena Hochheimer

A good friend to many, Helena Hochheimer passed away peacefully in her home on the morning of November 30, 2009. Though Hella’s early life was filled with tragedy and sadness, she never lost her belief in people and always saw the positive in the human spirit. She maintained a wonderful sense of humor throughout her life.

Born in Poland, Hella and her siblings lived in an orphanage in Germany after both parents lost their lives in a house fire. As she grew older, and became independent, she moved to Berlin where she met future husband Werner Hochheimer. After they wed, Hella and Werner fled Nazi Germany and went to Japan, where they spent the next 10 years. Hella spoke fondly of her years in Japan; until her death, she loved to go out to Japanese restaurants.

In 1947 Hella and Werner moved to San Francisco. They prospered and became a center of their community. Until her death, Hella maintained contact with friends and relatives all over the world. Survived by relatives, friends, and professionals who were honored to provide her care, all were touched by her generous nature and spirit of loving kindness.

Services were held this week at Salem Memorial Park in Colma.

Natalie Prager-Hertzmann

Passed away on November 18, 2009 at the age of 83 while recuperating from spinal surgery.

Born on January 11, 1926 in Brooklyn, New York, Natalie was, at the time, the only girl to attend the Yeshiva in Brooklyn where she graduated second in her class. She later went on to graduate from New York University. In 1947 she married Jack Prager, and raised a family with Jack in New York and South Florida before moving to San Francisco in 1970. Following Jack’s death in 1983, Natalie met and later married Walter Hertzmann of Portola Valley.

A strong supporter of Israel, Jewish causes, and education, Natalie was a remarkably kind, gentle soul and a sympathetic, compassionate, and positive presence to her family and many friends. One of Natalie’s special gifts, the hallmark of her great empathy for people, was the pleasure she took in striking up conversations with strangers, truly listening, and, within minutes, learning their histories and caring about them. A woman of wide tolerance, Natalie could always be counted on for her smile, her laugh, and her never-flagging encouragement of others’ hopes and dreams. She will be greatly missed.

Natalie is survived by sons Lawrence (Linda) and Kenneth (Lisa), and her four grandchildren, Deborah, Anna, Jacqueline and David. Donations may be made to the Jewish Federation of San Francisco.

Shirley Rubin

Passed away peacefully on December 1st at the age of 86. Shirley was predeceased in June by Morris, her devoted husband of over 62 years. She is survived by her daughter Nancy, son-in-law Jimmy and granddaughter Mattie; nieces and nephews — Mary, Marsha, Michael, Elyse, Savannnah, Jewyl, Stephen, Meri, Suzy and Charles. A long time Southern California resident, Shirley and Moe came to the Bay Area in 2007. Her greatest joy came from being surrounded by family and a wonderful circle of friends. Shirley’s enthusiasm for life was contagious — she will be deeply missed.

A Memorial service was held last week at Home of Peace Cemetery in Colma. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the charity of your choice.

Beloved husband and father Howard Stiebel, 83, of Hayward passed away peacefully on December 1. He leaves behind his loving and devoted wife of 62 years, Kathryn, brother-in-law Milton Sills and three daughters, Marice, Shelley and Leslie, and sons-in-law Gary Lindberg and Lewis Eslick. He is held in memory and loved always and forever.