The Passing of a Friend

Shirley Levine passed away peacefully yesterday in her bed at Village Shalom, where she had resided the better part of a decade. Though I’ll be eulogizing Shirley at Tuesday’s funeral, there’s one aspect of her long and lustrous life I’d like to touch on here. I daresay that Shirley’s immersion in the life of Ohev Sholom exceeds not only that of anyone in the history of our 140-year-old congregation, but of anyone in any congregation anywhere, any time.

For, not only was Shirley a member of our congregation almost an entire century. Over and above that: her father Pete Cohn, her husband Arnold Levine, and her son Joel Levine, all were presidents of our congregation! Which is certainly not to take anything away from Shirley’s own dedication to Ohev Sholom, through leading our Sisterhood, playing piano and arranging the music and singing for musical presentations, and regularly participating down through the years in the wide variety of programming and services we provide.

Next to her family, Ohev Sholom was very much her life. Knowing her as we did, it’s only appropriate to say that our gratitude to her for her devotion to Ohev Sholom is commensurate to the gratitude to Ohev she must have felt. Shirley, it was our pleasure. No one was more pleasant to have in our presence, than you. Thank you. We will miss you.