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We miss you, Irwin!

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There were many remembrances of Irwin's life.  A few of them can be found here.

Obituary

Rabbi Daniel Franzel's Eulogy

United Nations' Tribute

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Obituary printed in
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
The Record (Bergen County, New Jersey)

Franzel, Irwin Harold of Bradenton, Florida on Tuesday, September 30, 1997 in New Jersey, surrounded by his family. Born in Brooklyn, New York, August 14, 1924. Educated at Townsend Harris High School and City College of New York. Scientist, scholar and sailor. Founder and first president of New Milford Jewish Community Center. President and founder, Delta Rehabilitation, Inc. Beloved husband of Bernita. Son of Benjamin and Eva. Dear brother of Leila and Malcolm. Devoted father of David, Bruce, Kathy, Robin, Jonathan, Susan and Brian. Much loved father-in-law of Barbara, Cecilia, Jeanette, Eric, Coleen and Tina. Loving grandfather of Joseph, Johanna, Joshua, Sarah, Melina, Lauren, Julia, Christine and Katherine. Devoted uncle of Laura and Barry. Much loved by Stuart, Elizabeth, Eleanor, Cliff, Hugh and Charles. Contributions may be made in his memory to the American Heart Association. Services Sunday, October 5, 1997 at 2:00 p.m. at New Montefiore Cemetery, Farmingdale, Long Island, N.Y.

 

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Rabbi Daniel Franzel's Words at Funeral
Sunday, October 5, 1997

What words of comfort can I offer you that will lessen the pain.

What words of consolation can I speak that will ease the heavy burden that has
been put upon us all.

To paraphrase Isaiah: "There are no words. There is no speech."

Our sense of loss and our pain are enormous. Over time the pain will be not
quite as heavy but nevertheless it will be felt.

I want to share with you a special poem which I read when another member of
the Franzel family was brought to his eternal resting place. He is not far from us
now. This poem was appropriate then and certainly is appropriate now.

[Note that Cousin Danny was referring to Benjamin Franzel, Irwin's father.  This
poem was read at Ben's funeral in 1978.]

A giant pine, magnificent and old
Stood staunch against the sky and all around
Shed beauty, grace and power.

Within it's fold birds safely reared their young.
The velvet ground beneath was gentle
And the cooling shade gave cheer to passers-by. Its towering arms
A landmark stood, erect and unafraid
As if to say, Fear naught from life's alarms.
It fell one day.
Where it had dauntless stood
Was loneliness and void.
But men who passed paid tribute, said
To know this life was good. It left its mark on me.
Its work stands fast
And so it lives. Such life no bonds can hold.
This giant pine,
Magnificent and old.

We bring our beloved Irwin to his resting place next to his parents to whom he
was a devoted son. We gather around as one family-- drawn together by this
dynamic personality, this wonderful mad genius, this loving, caring soul.

Even those who lived on the periphery of Irwin's life have been deeply touched
and blessed. How much more so-- you who shared so, so many days and
years with him. How fortunate and blessed you are.
Leila, sister, and Malcolm, whom he loved and respected
Bernita, loving companion, sweetheart, friend, his adoring wife
Tante Sylvia, as he would call her, and Uncle Harry
His niece, Laura, and nephew, Barry.

Irwin accomplished so many amazing things in his life, but he would admit that
his greatest accomplishments of all time are his six wonderful, amazing
children:
David, Bruce, Jonathan, Kathy, Robin, Suzy
and, of course, his terrific grandchildren.

I know how sharp the pain and how deep the sense of loss, but I also know
how many are his blessings.

He loved you. He nurtured you. He held you close. He gave you warmth and
safety from life's alarms. He gave you life. And this is the greatest gift of all.

So I say again: How blessed you are to have had this man, this man so filled
with creative energy as a brother, loving husband, nephew, uncle and cousin.
But especially as a father and grandfather.

There are myriads of stories we could tell about Irwin's inventions and exploits,
his adventures, his sea-faring days. Each of us could pen at least one
sizeable volume of such stories with little overlap.

These stories-- about his inventive genius, his lectures, his experiments--
might seem a bit fantastic to someone outside the family circle, but are all true.
We will tell again and again to our children and grandchildren and thus will we
ever keep alive within us Irwin's memory, his character, his sense of humor.

We are only laying his body to rest, but what made Irwin such a unique
human being, we will keep in our hearts and souls.

He will ever be an eternal flame in our minds. And even now and for the rest
of our days, all that he has done will stand fast.

And so he will live. Such life no bonds can hold.
This giant pine,
Magnificent and old.

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THE UNA REPORTER
November 1997

UNA USA
UNITED NATIONS ASSOCIATION
of the UNITED STATES of AMERICA
SARASOTA-MANATEE CHAPTER

    P.O. Box 776
    Sarasota, FL  34230


A Tribute To A Gallant Leader:

IRWIN FRANZEL

    We mourn the passing of Irwin Franzel, a quiet, unassuming, and dedicated member of our Chapter whose long exceptional service to the United Nations was superior and effective in every way
    Irwin was one individual who gave much more of himself than he ever personally gained. Going back a long time, he served with distinction as a member of our Board of Directors for many, many terms. He fathered and developed our wonderful Tree Planting Project, an accomplishment which so aptly filled one of the aims of the United Nations. We admire him for his achievement in helping protect the earth's natural resources and the environment.
    He headed up a unique business called Delta Rehab, which made it possible for less fortunate persons to rejuvenate their lives. His long hours and caring efforts helped so many people who needed the help he saw that they received. Irwin unselfishly did much to make this a better planet, and we are proud that he served as one of our leaders.
    His loving wife, Bemita, also does tremendous work for the UNA, and we are very grateful. We extend our sympathy to her and want her to know that our loss is great also, not of the same magnitude as hers, but a loss that creates a void we cannot fill.

 

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