ForeverMissed
Because we can't get together in person for Shiva and hear the stories about him from so many of you who knew him, it would comfort us greatly if you shared them along with any photos here. Thank you for all of your support.
Posted by Toni Lee on July 9, 2020
I worked with Adam from 1986 until 1989 when the PR agency I worked for acquired his firm. I was a young PR account exec and he was a gracious mentor and leader. He was smart, funny and a good guy. I think of what I learned from him often and was glad to be able to send some business his way when I later went off on my own. I'm so sorry to hear of his death. May his memory be a blessing.
Posted by Sam Goldring on May 31, 2020
When you talked to Adam you felt he was fully present. He not only listened
well ,Adam took your words in and replied with a cogent response that made you feel your comment was worthy of his consideration.

Posted by Ralph Katz on May 6, 2020
I met my colleague and friend Adam in 2007 when he somehow found our agency and suggested we join the international agency network, PRGN, in which his agency was a member. The first meeting I attended with Adam was in Sao Paulo, Brazil and we spent our free time exploring the City and getting to know one another. From that, we built an on-going relationship.

In recent years, Adam and I met in the City two or three times a year for a catch-up lunch. I'm not sure if everyone knows how "cool" Adam was, but for one lunch early last year, he suggested we meet at Black Barn in Union Square. It was trendy well beyond my usual but I loved it and chose it for the family dinner celebration for my 70th birthday. As my three late 30s and early 40s children and spouses walked in, I don't think there has been a time I ever seemed as with it to that group. They kept asking one another, "Did dad choose this place?" Thanks to Adam, I had a moment where to them, I not only seemed like I belonged in the 21st Century, but that I was a trend-setter.

Adam was a good friend and smart business colleague and I will miss his gentle wisdom.
Posted by Joseph Friedman on April 29, 2020
The following is the eulogy delivered by Yisroel at Dads’s memorial.

My father—R. Yitzchok ben Yisroel, also known as Adam Friedman, was the most impressive person I ever knew, and the greatest teacher I ever had. There is less kindness in the world now that he is gone. I hope some of you might feel inspired by our words to do or feel something good in the world to offset this great loss.
My father was the least lazy person you ever met. He was busy always. In addition to a successful career in public relations and a side gig as an NYU professor, he was persistent in his interests, which were broader than most people you will come across. He was exceedingly learned, studying torah intently—alone, with chavrusas and in shiurim--all his life, without fanfare. He was also worldly, knowledgeable about art and music, he travelled widely, and was an absurdly avid reader, he read 7 or 8 books at a time. He was also physically active, ran 9 marathons beginning in his late 40s, and danced with enthusiastic spirituality. He believed that any goal was achievable with enough persistence, focus and hard work. 
My father was also steeped in tradition. His name was Yitzchok, and the torah says about our forefather Yitzchok,
וַיָּשָׁב יִצְחָק וַיַּחְפֹּר אֶת-בְּאֵרֹת הַמַּיִם, אֲשֶׁר חָפְרוּ בִּימֵי אַבְרָהָם אָבִיו
And Isaac returned to dig the wells that were previously dug in the days of Abraham his father. (Gen. 26:18).
Yitzchok ensured that his father’s legacy carried on. My father had very special lineage. He was the oldest direct male descendent of the heilige rizhiner, The holy Reb Yisroel of Rizhin, through the Sadiger line. The founder of a Chasidic dynasty that to this day has many tens of thousands of adherents. My father stayed connected to his Chassidic family and roots, and his entire life was an expression of this Chassidic sensibility. If you saw my father smile, you saw the glory of what a streimel is supposed to signify. He could express the deepest chassidus just in the warm way he greeted people. 
To uphold a tradition, is to pay it forward, כִּי בְיִצְחָק, יִקָּרֵא לְךָ זָרַע. Through Isaac, will your name be continued (Gen. 21:12). My father took his parenting very seriously. Compared to many of his generation, he was exceptional in how hands-on he was as a father. He changed diapers with the same gusto that he prayed. Parenting was a holy act for him. He played with my brothers and I, monitored our academic progress, attended every parent teacher conference, and grilled us on our week’s torah study each Shabbos. He bought us books on everything we showed an interest in, and everything he thought we should show an interest in. He took a deep interest in our careers, and advised us on all our major decisions.
I would like to express my gratitude for the enormous investment my father made in me as a parent. This time slot was not selected at random. As a child, the highlight of my week was 12:30 on Sunday afternoon, that’s when Sunday yeshiva ended and I learned what activity my father planned for the afternoon. He took us to museums, aquariums, zoos and parks, to ice skating and horseback riding, to farms, to the beach, to concerts, and to shows. He was insistent that we appreciate the full range of beauty and complexity in the world that Hashem gifted to us. And he personally took the time to show us the wonder of Hashem’s world.
My father parented with a vision, and if he got an idea in his head he never, ever let it go. For example, to instill us with a connection to Israel, he decided that I need to go to Israel for my bar mitzvah. But he couldn’t afford to fly the family to Israel, so he sent each of us to Israel for the summer after we turned 13 with camp sdei chemed to tour Israel (we saw a lot of kevarim). But, there was a catch, I could only go if I finished reading the book Exodus, by Leon Uris (over 600 pages), and The Source by James Michener (over 1100 pages). I was 13 years old. My father took no shortcuts.
My father took me to visit his work at almost every job he ever had (and visited me at every job I ever had (yes, he came in to meet my bosses even in my 40s!). I sat next him in shul for most of my life and he davened with the same fervor in a young Israel as in a shitbel. He insisted I stay in shul as a child for davening, even during boring speeches delivered entirely in Yiddish. When I protested that I didn’t understand a word, he countered, How else will you learn Yiddish, if you don’t stay in and listen! My father was relentless. Relentless in his hope, his dreams and his noodging us and everyone around him to be their best self. 
My parent’s marriage was a great romance, but there was also so much respect and admiration; they never took each other for granted and they constantly invested in each other. My parent’s relationship is a very private and intimate thing that it isn’t my place to discuss, but it was so instructive that I so often wish other people could have observed it up close.
But for my father, life’s value went beyond family. We all love our families and try to be good parents, good children and good spouses, but Chesed, kindness, is not about being good to your family. My father would say that even animals show familial love and affection. To be human is to show kindness and empathy to those who aren’t your family. My father’s caring, empathy and kindness to those outside his immediate family was extraordinary. He actively mentored his nephews and nieces, gave wise advice to his students, and helped so many people who had lost their jobs during the 2008 financial crisis find new jobs, careers and, most of all, hope. My father didn’t just guide people to find jobs, he coached people to realize dreams, to gain self-confidence and to believe they can do more than they thought possible. My father also befriended older people, even when he was young. He cherished the wisdom and authenticity that older people embodied.
My father also exuded positivity. When people were down, he would show them the path to hope and it helped motivate them. He was the consummate teacher. My father also had enormous potential for empathy. To illustrate, in 1975, when I was a 5 years old, my father met a man in shul who had no place to stay for shabbos. Five years later, Shimshon was still sleeping over in our small 2 bedroom apartment for most of the Jewish holidays. Everyone thought he was family, but he was just someone my father found in shul. My father didn’t collect lost souls, he found lost souls and helped them find themselves. In the past week, I cannot tell you how many people that I had no idea even knew my father, were expressing gratitude for kindnesses he had done them. For providing advice, mentorship, jobs and encouragement. And he did this without recognition, for no personal advantage. My father believed the world is a ladder and he genuinely enjoyed seeing people ascend from their lows, one rung at a time, to new heights.
In addition to my father’s persistence, and kindness and positivity, my father had another special tool. Stories. He was a mesmerizing storyteller. If you ever heard him speak publicly, you know what I’m referring to. Stories didn’t just capture complicated ideas, they gave meaning to the sometimes muddled confusion of life. I remember so many of his stories, but I don’t have his skills as a storyteller. And there are also so many stories that I have forgotten. But my father even had a story about that. Sometimes, we don’t remember the story, but we remember that there was a story and that memory alone is also something. 
I lost my father, I lost my rebbi, my rebbe. He was such a unique person that he cannot be replaced and I cannot possibly capture him in these few minutes, but I am comforted in knowing that such a person existed. That there was someone who’s life’s story was so full, so complete, so multifaceted, so steeped in tradition, yet so completely refreshing and new. I thank Hashem for giving me such a father and I thank Hashem for allowing all of my children and my brothers’ children to know him. I am not mourning alone. This is a dark moment in the world, and there is much pain and despair. But my father’s legacy is one of hope, of optimism, of a warm smile, of persistence, of kindness to family, to friends and to strangers. Abba, I love you, and I hope we can be worthy of your name
Posted by Joseph Friedman on April 27, 2020
The following is the text of the eulogy from Dad's memorial

I wanted to begin by thanking so many of you for sharing your kind words of condolence as well as stories and insights into the way my Father positively impacted you. We all suffer from not knowing what we have until its gone. And its clear from the outpouring we have heard from all of you via email, phone calls text messages etc how much Dad meant to the so many people he interacted with.

It’s difficult to eulogize my Dads incredibly full and accomplished 75 years in this world. Dad was my North star, my frame of reference in every decision I made. Every turn I have taken. He was my role model, my hero, my mentor. If I could have sat with him, in his last few weeks, when he was tormented by solitary confinement in his hospital room, I would have held his hand, looked him in the eye and told him that.

To anyone and everyone who knew my father, you knew he had firm footing and tremendous pride in his deep-rooted Jewish tradition and a thirst and unquenchable curiosity for culture, for art, for literature. In the same day he would read esoteric 19th century poetry, Fast Company magazine and have a Chavrussa in Talmud/ Gemara. Add to that an incredible love, interest and sacrifice for his family, friends and students, and you get Yitz (Adam) Friedman.
I want to share a few memories I have that speak volumes into who Dad was and what he stood for.

Our home growing up had a steady stream of guests. We had a guest room, and we used it. Even now on this Memorial, I wonder how many of the folks here can recall staying in it or joining us at our Shabbat table. Yes, family and close friends were always welcome, but what about the widows, divorcees, converts, co- workers that were culturally curious, people of all different backgrounds were welcome to eat and often sleep in our home. Living up to this shining example is a challenge Dad, but I promise to work on it in my own home.

This past week my older kids Leila and Yoav have unfortunately had to see me crying, and I said its normal and I can recall seeing my Dad Cry. They put me on the spot and asked me to be specific. My incredible wife Andrea converted, and the road to get there was difficult for my Parents. But I remember my Dads crying embrace when he told me we would work through it and how he fully accepts her. Every year, for the past 15 years since..he has recalled the date, April 8th when Andrea converted. He calls her every year to wish her a Mazel Tov, to reinforce his irreplaceable love, his acceptance, his crying embrace.
Who will call her now? There is no replacement.

Many of you know Dad was a Marathon Runner. I believe he completed the NYC Marathon 9 times. We used that to encourage him to keep fighting through his final ordeal…in which he never gave up fighting, I promise he went down swinging. I remember watching him in one of those Marathons, I must have been 10 or so. We would watch him on 1st avenue coming off the Queensboro bridge. He was full of energy and excitement as huge crowds flanked the sidewalks. Then we would cross town to catch him before he entered Central Park, the final push on mile 23 or so on 5th Avenue. He looked tired and cold. I can see his red nose and slow jog right now if I close my eyes. He finished, like he always did, and I remember after the race, he was wrapped in one of those big tin foils that allegedly keeps you warm and we had to walk 20 or so blocks to where the car was parked. Imagine you run a 26 mile race, and then you have to walk another mile to the car- impossible right? I remember Dad was worried I might be hungry, he insisted we stop somewhere to get me a bagel or something. Even at age 10 I remember being amazed. My exhausted Dad was worried about his son missing lunch, not getting back to the warm car and home where he could collapse. Thank you Abba. Your love and sacrifice were unwavering.

When I was a teenager- I decided my life’s calling was to be a Weatherman. Dad didn’t dismiss my Meteorological obsession, he embraced it. He didn’t try and steer me away or cast it off as a phase. Dad arranged a meeting with the Channel 5 weatherman, he schlepped me to Stonybrook for a visit to the National Weather Center Station and leased me a car so I could drive to my summer internship at a weather station in Connecticut. The lesson from all this is clear- believe in your kids, embrace and foster their interests and support them-He believed in investing in the journey- regardless of fully knowing what the destination would be.
You took being a Zaydee to your 11 grandchildren seriously, and fully committed to the role like all your other responsibilities. Airport pickups at 5 am from JFK. Bike Rides in Denver. Hockey Games. Turkey Trots. Hiking. You joined us in Steamboat, Relished in your Grandchildren’s Ma Nishtana. Took everyone to the book store. The Statue of Liberty. The Intrepid. Visited Shua during his gap year in Israel. Bathed and did the nighttime routine for my twins with a smile ( no small endeavor). Museums. Mariano Rivera Jerseys. Hassidic Tisches and more.
You kept tabs and knew the celebrations, struggles and interests of so many friends and family. Your Uncleing skills are legendary.

During our final conversation, you were struggling, but far from giving up. IT was a Friday, and like all Fridays- since I left the shelter of your home, we spoke on the phone. I asked you for a Bracha, a blessing maybe it was because I sensed what was coming, I am not sure. You recited the blessing stopping at each after each verse to cough and catch your breath. Dad I would like to recite this blessing to for your Neshama, your soul.

May God bless you and protect you.
יְבָרֶכְךָ יְהוָה וְיִשְׁמְרֶךָ
May God show you favor and be gracious to you.
יָאֵר יְהוָה פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וִיחֻנֶּךָּ
May God show you kindness and grant you peace.
יִשָּׂא יְהוָה פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וְיָשֵׂם לְךָ שָׁלום

To Conclude, many of you have kindly asked to make a donation to honor my Dad’s memory. I thought about this hard, and if you knew him, there was one form of charity he was clearly most passionate about. Pops loved to help people find jobs. To mentor them, to network with them. To guide them. So many people have come forth in the last few days to share how my Dad assisted them in their work. Whether it was telling them what they needed to hear, but weren’t able to get candid advice elsewhere, cleaning up their shop that had recently burnt down, drafted a cover letter, reviewed a resume, the list is endless.

My ask is that during this challenging time, find someone in your network. Maybe they are hiring, maybe they are having difficulty finding work, maybe they could use some guidance, candid constructive feedback, help with a cover letter, making a recommendation. Don’t just offer it- follow up with the person who didn’t take you up on your offer! That’s what Dad would have done and I can think of no greater way to honor his memory.
Posted by Moshe Levison on April 23, 2020
Remembrances of Yitz Friedman

1 Early Memories
It was over 30-35 years ago that the Friedman family moved to New Rochelle and joined the Young Israel. I recall feeling that this Suave, Sophisticated family (from Boro Park), a Mad Ave Public Relations man would be a welcome addition to the shul. Personally, I was happy to hear that their youngest son Yoseph was the same age as Avi who would have a new same-age playmate. Dreams of Shabbat playdates danced in my mind. (In those days, there was only one other boy Avi’s age in the community). I soon learned that my first impression was reinforced learning that Yitz was an heir of Chassidic Royalty. It all made sense.
Yitz’s strong love of Torah was exemplified in my mind especially in my memories of Simchat Torah in the old Shul building. I vividly remember Yitz’s spirited dancing around and with the Sefer Torah. And imprinted in my mind is Yitz, wrapped in his Talit standing up on a chair in one of the Hakafot breaks, and spiritedly leading the Kahal in the Aderet V’Emunah and the Ayn Adir Piyutim with everyone singing the refrain in Yiddish at the end of each stanza that Yitz sang. (Shades of Pete Seeger) (I still don’t know what the Yiddish refrain means).  I for one think of Yitz leading us as the highlight of Simchat Torah for many years in the old Shul. I looked forward to it each year.

2 More Recent Memories
Soon after Avi got married, Shirley and Yitz invited us for a Shabbat meal not too long before they left New Rochelle and moved to the city. I missed seeing Yitz after they left New Rochelle.

3 Recent Memories
I hadn’t seen Yitz that often after they left New Rochelle, but this year the whole family returned to celebrate Yisrael’s 50th birthday. It was good to see them all, happily celebrating with Yisrael. On that Shabbat morning I could see on their faces their pride in Yisrael and their love of Torah as Yisrael delivered his 929 Shiur. Another occasion was at Yisrael’s Monday night Nach Shiur, and again their pride in Yisrael showed in their faces.
The last time I saw Yitz, just before he became sick, was not in person, but on the Zoom 929 shiur that Yisrael gave. Once again Yitz’s face showed his pride in Yisrael and his love of Torah as Yisrael delivered the shiur.

Tiheyeh Nishmato Baruch.
Posted by Adele Tauber on April 23, 2020
4-12-20
Deepest Sadness
Dearest Shirley,
I am so terribly sorry and sad to hear about Adam’s untimely passing, such a terrible shock. The loss of such a beautiful person is overwhelming.

I loved  Adam.  He was  such a fine man – warm, friendly, kind and generous, loyal and caring—the consummate mensch to friends and fellow Jews. I know about  the chesed he did to those confined to their homes, how he visited the sick and elderly, how he learned with Irwin Shapiro every Shabbat. I am sure that what I personally know is only the tip of the iceberg. I remember your warm Shabbat visit to me after my knee  surgery— both of you together made a powerful gemilat  chesed team.  

And what a scholar. I loved talking torah with Adam and listening to his divrai torah. He loved learning, his face glowed with enthusiasm when he learned something new and in his intellectual generosity, he immediately wanted to share it with others. He was so intellectually curious about so many things— he loved going to antiquity exhibits and lectures with Ronnie— their friendship and camaraderie was a pleasure to behold.

And what a beautiful writer. I will never forget the absolutely beautiful speech he made to the community expressing his hakarat hatov for  their support when he was ill. His speech was written from the heart and inscribed on mine. דברים שיוצאים מן הלב נכנסים אל הלב.

Adam was a beautiful man in every aspect of personality and in every caring deed he performed during his lifetime. Ronnie and I will never forget him—our lives have been blessed and enhanced  to know him.
We love you Shirley, and share your profound sadness. 
‎תהא נשמתו צרורה בצרור החיים
Adele and Ronnie

April 19 20
4-19-20
Extraordinary

Shirley,
You should be so proud of your sons— each one spoke so beautifully about Adam a”h, bringing his unusual goodness to life and made me so grateful to have known your extraordinary husband and father—a man I will never forget. Listening to the moving speeches, punctuated with deep love and devotion, I really understood how blessed Adam a”h was to live a life that embodied all his ideals and how successful he was in balancing the multiple facets of his life.

I did not know about Adam’s Impressive chassidic roots ( he was too modest to brag about his prestigious yichus) but it makes so much sense to me that Adam embodied the spirituality of his grandfather, the famous Wunder Rebbee Israel Friedman. I believe the Rebbee was known as a miracle maker, and Adam, like his grandfather, certainly produced miracles for the numerous people he helped during his lifetime. He enhanced the lives of all he touched with gentle kindness and chesed. He could not have left a better legacy to his family. 

Shirley, you and your family made an extraordinary and loving tribute to an extraordinary man.
המקום ינחם אתכם
Love, Adele and Ronnie

April 19 20
4-19-20
Extraordinary Tribute to Adam

Shirley,
You should be so proud of your sons— each one spoke so beautifully about Adam a”h, bringing his unusual goodness to life and made me so grateful to have known your extraordinary husband and father—a man I will never forget. Listening to the moving speeches, punctuated with deep love and devotion, I really understood how blessed Adam a”h was to live a life that embodied all his ideals and how successful he was in balancing the multiple facets of his life.

I did not know about Adam’s Impressive chassidic roots ( he was too modest to brag about his prestigious yichus) but it makes so much sense to me that Adam embodied the spirituality of his grandfather, the famous Wunder Rebbee Israel Friedman. I believe the Rebbee was known as a miracle maker, and Adam, like his grandfather, certainly produced miracles for the numerous people he helped during his lifetime. He enhanced the lives of all he touched with gentle kindness and chesed. He could not have left a better legacy to his family. 

Shirley, you and your family made an extraordinary and loving tribute to an extraordinary man.
המקום ינחם אתכם
Love, Adele and Ronnie
Posted by Brian Kalb on April 22, 2020
Simchat Torah-
When our kids were young, in the old shul
I remember Yitz would make sure all were “laibadik”. He would get up on a chair with a talis over his head, and command the room with his rendition of “LChai Olamim”! It would raise the spirits of all during hakafot.
Yitz was a true pillar of our community, a classy man, a true gentleman, always with a friendly smile to all he greeted. 
May all these memories give your family comfort. 
The Kalb Family
Posted by Amy Finkelstein on April 19, 2020
Joseph and Dovid: Thank you for giving us the opportunity to honor your family and remember your father at the service today. The circumstances of his passing are so difficult, but you created a beautiful space in which to remember him. We are thinking of the entire Friedman family at this difficult time.
Posted by David Friedman on April 19, 2020
Here is the recording of today's memorial service.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O2ji02ShQ9E&feature=youtu.be&app=desktop
Posted by Josseline Charas on April 19, 2020
It was good to be with you today. Thank you for sharing the memorial where Adam was so lovingly recreated.

I met Adam shortly after I moved to New York in 1982. New in town I was “networking” to find work and someone to whom I owe a big thank you introduced us. Over that first cup of tea sparked a friendship that endured over decades. Our tradition was to meet twice a year when he took me to lunch for my birthday and I took him for lunch for his, in February. This year it was on the 25th and I am saddened to know it was our last, just a few short weeks ago. It seems surreal, actually.

Lunch with Adam was always rich in conversation. We talked about so much! Obviously – books, where our tastes often overlapped. Movies, theater, our most recent travels and those we planned. Politics, economics, religion, spiritual matters, art, music, history, life in New York… angels. Mostly, I loved hearing about his family – his three sons of which he was so proud, their beautiful and accomplished families, and the queen of his life, Shirley.

I think we all share the way we felt when we were with Adam: seen and heard and appreciated. He always seemed so present. It was a kind of charisma, no?

I know you, his beloved family, will continue on the path he forged, valuing accomplishment, kindness and generosity, decency, a global outlook, an appreciation for beauty. Joseph joins me in sending wishes for rapidly healing hearts and that the happiest memories of Adam sustain you. Much love...
Posted by Joan Meyer on April 19, 2020
With the passing of Itzy, a bight light has left our lives. I am so honored to have had the gift of Itzy's friendship in my life. I echo all that was said at the beautiful Hesped. I cherish so many wonderful memories spending time with Itzy, Shirley and those incredible sons. Itzy was a true Renaissance man, integrating intellect, Torah, culture, beauty, kindness, love and friendship in the most elegant way. Itzy enriched and elevated my life in countless ways and left the world a far better place. Love always, Joan
Posted by Ed Leventhal on April 19, 2020
Yisroel....Rose and I are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of your father z"l. We've known him, and your Mom, for years and though we saw him infrequently, we were always greeted with a smile and a warmth that radiated friendship, caring and comradery. When I last saw him at a minyan at Schanzer's house, I once again enjoyed that greeting, but even more memorable was the way his face lit up when I told him how your divrei Torah at our Friday night minyanim was something that I looked forward to each week! 
I also know that we shared a special bond through the Nesivos Shalom....I once stumbled into one of the sefers in the shul's Beis Medresh and noted that it was donated by your father.
Your note about your father was so beautiful, and should be the goal of every parent to leave the kind of legacy that you so articulately described. May your gift of Torah knowledge that is rooted from your father and that you've developed into a masterful skill continue to inspire others and to be an aliyas neshama for your father.
המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלי ציון וירושלים
With our sincerest condolences,
Ed & Rose
Posted by Massimiliano Szulc on April 19, 2020
We were honored and privileged to meet Adam(Yitz) and Shirley as soon as they moved to Manhattan. His smile, his incredible disposition, laced with a sincere smile, always greeted Teri and myself wherever we met. So many common interests, including a passion for traveling to unusual destinations, always provided topics for endless pleasant conversations, which we will miss terribly. His Torah scholarship and his ma'asim tovim will be forever of inspiration. May his gute neshoma have an Aliyah in Gan Eden!
Posted by Harvey Arfa on April 19, 2020
My friendship with Adam Friedman for the past seven or eight years has been one of the highlights of my life. That he will be missed goes without saying. For me and for so many others he will be hard to replace.
Adam was one of a kind. He was a good and loyal friend. He was knowledgeable on so many topics. He was kind and thoughtful. He was polite and humble. He loved art, and literature, and music, and history and Torah. He had a great sense of humor and an insight into people. He was compassionate about the people he knew and those he did not know. He was deeply religious but not fanatical. He was a chassid and a misnaggid at the same time. He was politically liberal but in a tolerant way. He had love. For his wife. For his children. For his extended family. For his friends. For his students. For the Jewish people. I do not recall hearing a negative word from him.
We met at a New Year’s Eve party at the home of the effervescent Joy Behr. Adam and Shirley had just moved into the Upper East Side of Manhattan and as friends of the late Vivian Mann were invited to the party. My late wife Barbara and I felt this was a nice couple and that it would be good to integrate them into the community, which we have been told can be difficult to “break Into.” So we invited them to a dinner at our home which was scheduled the following Friday night. It was already going to be a large table, but there was room for 2 more. Adding Adam and Shirley was one of the best decisions we made.
I always enjoy having a d’var torah from a guest. It makes it interesting and I probably had not prepared one myself. Without knowing the full depth of knowledge and personal history of our guest, I asked Adam if he would like to give us a few words of divrei torah. Well he did, and he knocked it out of the park. When I later learned of the depth of his knowledge I realized that for him it was just a walk in the park.
Adam and I became friends. It was not just a “Good Shabbos how are you” friendship. It was a friendship of true conversation and personal intercession. Adam was an athlete. He was a marathon runner. He was a cyclist. He encouraged me to ride a bike with him on Sundays, and under his supervision I dutifully bought a helmet and went along for the ride. He made sure I rented the best bike for my level. He was fully understanding when I had to walk the bike up that steep hill in Central Park. He encouraged me to ride and take long walks in the park. At some point we began to walk downtown to my office together, followed by a healthy breakfast. We would talk about what I was doing and what he was doing. We would bounce ideas off each other. I asked for his help in connection with an Israeli charitable institution and he gave me a whole public relations campaign. He would tell me about his students and how fantastic they were. It was something I looked forward to very week, and Adam was the one who took the initiative every week to ask me if I was available. We went to class together on Sunday mornings, and when I missed the class Adam would call to find out whether I was ok. He was a true friend.
I am sure others will tell you about how he went to study torah with one special talmid chacham every Shabbat, without fail. I am sure someone will mention how he would take one individual in a wheelchair to shul on many shabossim where the trip to Shul was the highlight of the week for this person. When I took that person to shul the first time, Adam came to show me how it could best be done. In both cases Adam did his mitzvah with enthusiasm. He was a personal teacher to me about how mitzvahs should be done. He did things for others without seeking reward, but if you ever did something for him he did not let you ever forget it.
Adam, I will miss you. I do not think I can replace you. May his soul continue to inspire us. May his soul continue to be among the living. 
Harvey Arfa
Posted by Lena Fishman on April 19, 2020
I was fortunate to join the Friedman family for Leila’s Bat Mizvah at the Kotel about a year ago. There were many special moments but the one that struck me the most was how deeply special the event was for Yitz. I vividly remember being captivated by the pride Yitz had in his granddaughter. The ‘nachos’ was radiating through him and lighting up the event as he stood right next to Leila, leaning with the yad he had given her in front of the Kotel.
Posted by Harris Bak on April 19, 2020
We have so many memories over thirty years of close friendship. Yitz and Shirley at the beach - holding hands, enjoying the sun and the surf. Yitz and Shirley being the first to give a vote of confidence at our first building in Harlem. Enjoying frequent "catch-up and conversation" lunches with Hertzie at Wolf & Lamb. But perhaps the most indelible memory of all is Yitz Friedman - a man of elegance and intellect - getting "down" and leading the most leibidik mezinkah in our honor that we will never forget. The vision of him dancing and literally sweeping out the phase in our lives of child-rearing will stay with us forever and ever.  It is our honor to have had him as our friend for so many years.
Love forever,
Lolly and Hertzie
Posted by Roselyn Weitzner on April 19, 2020
I was fortunate to meet Adam and Shirley when they moved to Manhattan.
We became good friends. My memories are of the many Shabbos meals we shared in my home and in theirs. Adam always had a meaningful dvar torah . He was a true' ben torah'. I will miss our discussions as well as his kindness.
May his memory be a comfort to his family and friends
Posted by Jillian Galitzer on April 18, 2020
Yitz was a good friend of my parents in New Rochelle. He was always dressed well and he always had a smile on his face. He was a real Mensch and will be missed.
♥️, Jillian Borowich Galitzer
Posted by Chaim Trachtman on April 18, 2020
What was most striking about Yitz was how many things he enjoyed and took a genuine interest in. He loved all things French, virtually every English author live or dead, theater, classical music. I thinks sports was the only thing Yitz knew nothing about -- but hey no one is perfect. Yitz was a real cosmopolitan. There are those who use that word disparagingly but I think Yitz would agree with his fellow NYU faculty member Kwame Appiah that it is a good thing to aspire to. He was open to everything and exchanged ideas and thoughts with everyone. But most importantly he was a grounded cosmopolitan. He loved his Hasidic roots, his wife, his sons and their families, his community, his friends, his job, his students. I would listen to him learn with Sam Heilman, lead zemirot at the Shabbat table, watch him mingle in shul and by the pool and smile at how much he enjoyed each moment. Every component of his rich and multifaceted life gave him pleasure and that is a rare trait. We would share thoughts on books we had recently read. I just bought The Club on his recommendation. I will come to realize how much I have lost when I will be unable to go over to Yitz on Sunday morning before he headed off to Rabbi Wieder 's shiur and ask him why he liked it so much.
Posted by Bruce Schanzer on April 18, 2020
I got to know Yitz when I moved to New Rochelle and became an admirer of his during the 2008 recession when he headed a committee to help people who were unemployed or experiencing financial stress. His genuine empathy for all those who were stressed and affected by this crisis was sincere and personal. He cared about each individual and worked hard and with great sensitivity to help them. When his son Yisroel became my neighbor and as I evolved professionally Yitz and I developed a much more personal relationship. For a period of time he was formally engaged to give me PR advice. His wisdom and judgement were remarkable. After his engagement ended, he continued to act as a thoughtful advisor to me. A few hallmarks of how Yitz did things were that when I called he would always respond promptly, he would listen actively and then he would tell me what he thought in a highly intelligent and pointed manner. He somehow managed to tell me what I needed to hear rather than what I wanted to hear and he communicated in a way that landed just right. He was a sweet and gentle man who was generous to all. I am forever grateful for his generosity towards me and will miss calling him to pick his brain and get his unfiltered advice. I am incredibly sad that he is gone and will remember him fondly.
Posted by Isadora Bielsky on April 18, 2020
I never saw Yitz without a smile on his face. He was kind, loving and so genuinely positive. He’s love for his children and grandchildren was beyond measure. He clearly relished every visit and made each person he met feel that they mattered to him. I will miss his visits and warm greetings. I feel blessed that you all shared him with me and my family.
Posted by Jason Cuthbert on April 18, 2020
We were fortunate enough to meet Adam and Shirley when our daughter Andrea married Joseph. In the years that followed Adam was always kind, generous, and quick to smile. Our grandkids loved him very much and that's really all we needed to see. Our heartfelt condolences to Shirley and the entire family.

Jason & Kathleen Cuthbert
Posted by Sandra Bark on April 17, 2020
I met Adam and Shirley when I was in college, a friend of Dovid's who was invited home. I remember rows of tea pots, the greenest lawn, Adam's warm questions, Shirley's kindness. I have seen them since many times, at Dovid and Cheryl's wedding, on holidays, at their grandchildren's bat mitzvahs. Always, the warmth, the kindness, their loving acknowledgment, their devotion to each other and to their family.
   Just before they moved to New York City, I was in their house again. "Take anything you want," they said. I wanted an oversized yellow poster from the upstairs hallway, a framed Calder from the 70s. "Take it." I carried it home, on the MetroNorth, on the subway, on the ten blocks home. It still hangs in my home.
  I remember having lunch with Adam and one of his clients. As always, the graciousness--the attentiveness--the awareness of others. He was a wonderful person. All my love to his family.
Posted by Emma Stanton on April 17, 2020
I am truly sorry to hear of Adam's passing and feel lucky to have known him. I was one of Professor Friedman's students at NYU. His ethics class was challenging and he loved to stir debates. He went above and beyond the call of duty to help me with my resume and then hired me as soon as I finished the NYU program in 2015. It was my first P.R. job and I learned so much from Adam and really enjoyed hearing of his experiences. My most heartfelt condolences to his family and he is in my prayers. May he rest in peace.
Posted by Judith Boim on April 17, 2020
Eddie I only met Joe and Dovid’s father and mother once in Denver when we were both visiting our children for Sukkot. The warmth and genuine friendliness that they showed us left an indelible happy impression. 

Posted by Gary Goldberg on April 17, 2020
Yitz -A’H’ was an amazing man. He was bright, empathetic, cultured and a scholar who was able to make everyone feel comfortable and excited to be around him. He loved his family. He loved and appreciated literature, cinema and the arts. His love of Yiddishkeit and the Jewish people was obvious in his daily life and actions. His friendship was unconditional. Yitz and I completed our 1st NY Marathon together and he was very proud of that achievement. We will always remember our nights out with Yitz and Shirley – tango dancing, Broadway, the philharmonic, comedy clubs, jazz clubs and even a Brazilian discotheque. He lived his life with gusto and zest. He was approachable for any questions or help. He embraced everyone who crossed his path without bias or judgment.
We will miss him, and he will be missed by many dear friends and of course his beautiful family. Our thoughts and prayers are with his beloved soulmate – Shirley and his children – Yisroel, David, Joseph and their extended families.

המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלי ציון וירושלים
Posted by Joe Nussbaum on April 16, 2020
We only got to know R' Yitz Friedman Z"L over the last 15 years but he left an indelible impression upon our family. He was a real gentleman who had an aura of royalty hailing from the house of Ruzhin of which he was a descendant. He loved sharing a story and conversation. He will be sorely missed.

המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלי ציון וירושלים
Posted by Alex Guerrero on April 16, 2020
I am so sad that my friend Adam has passed away. He was such a great guy. We worked together for 13 years but the relationship was so much more. He approached everything in a selfless and giving way and anybody that knew him fell in love. He really had my back and wanted the best for me. I will miss him.
Posted by David Keltz on April 16, 2020
I was fortunate to have had two classes with Professor Friedman at NYU in the Fall of 2017, and Fall of 2018. Not only did I learn more in his classes than just about any other professor, but he had a gift for keeping every student fully engaged for two and half hours. This was partly because students were fearful he might call on them, as he was apt to do from time to time, but mostly because they were truly interested in what he had to say. He was witty and insightful. He taught me about the history and practice of public relations, and the ethical conundrums that practitioners face. As he said of the profession, “we are trying to persuade the public, and our shareholders in an honest, persuasive and ethical way." Professor Friedman was an extraordinary professor, but he was an even more generous person. He will be deeply missed by the NYU community, and everyone who was lucky enough to know him. My deepest condolences go out to his family. May his memory be a blessing.
Posted by Lief Labs on April 16, 2020
We had the great pleasure of working with Adam through his Public Relations services as our PR representative for the past year and a half. His expertise as a reporter, strategic communicator and editor brought Lief Labs into the public eye and into top tier publications. He made sure that he aligned our business strategies to create campaigns that delivered optimal results. His sense of humor topped with his professionalism made him a very special person. He always inspired us and made us think outside the box. We are so sorry for his sudden loss and our hearts go out to his family. Our team at Lief Labs is grieving at his passing, but we will always remember him as a great mentor and businessman. Rest in peace, Adam!
Posted by John Pistana on April 16, 2020
Adam and I arranged to meet in 2004 in NYC prior to our childrens wedding. From that moment on and through all the times we shared with our children and grandchildren, I knew him to be a loving, passionate and kind man. I will always look upon those memories from the wedding, grandparents day, Thanksgiving and moments in between with fondness and respect of a friend who, above all, loved family, his friends, his faith and life itself. My heartfelt condolences to Shirley and the entire Friedman family.
Posted by Alexandra Butman on April 15, 2020
Professor Friedman was an exceptional instructor – I got lucky to join his class twice at NYU. First, when he was teaching Ethics in PR and communications. In this class Professor Friedman taught us a lot of things, but most importantly, he showed us how to think critically. Once, he told us about his family and his grandchildren – he looked so proud!

The second class is the one that still continues this semester. This seems unreal, as I’m still holding Professor Friedman’s hand-written notes on my research topic. He was teaching this class on Thursdays, and I remember how we were leaving our classroom last time before the quarantine. He told us to stay safe.

Thank you Professor Friedman, you’ll be greatly missed. Sending heartfelt condolences to the family and friends.
Posted by Kerry O'Grady on April 15, 2020
I had the distinct pleasure of working with Adam for over eight years at NYU, where he was one of my adjunct faculty in the M.S. program in Public Relations and Corporate Communication. In fact, since I've heard about his passing, I keep hearing his distinct, warm voice in my head. Whether he was calling about a student, volunteering to advise (yet another) Capstone, or wanting to take on a bigger role in a meeting or workshop, he was always kind, dependable, and professional ---- forever making me crack a smile, even on the toughest of days. I spent some time yesterday going through past emails he sent me, the most recent being when I announced I was taking a new job. He said he'd miss me and that Georgetown was lucky. Well, Adam, we were lucky to have you, and you'll be tremendously missed. My thoughts and prayers with his family.
Posted by Abram Orwasher on April 15, 2020
I knew Adam from minyamin at KJ and the shtibel. Although our relationship did not include the details of our personal lives, Adam would ALWAYS make a point to greet me. He epitomized to me the community of davening. His warm, kind being radiated from his face. May his memory be a blessing.
Posted by Julia Bonner on April 15, 2020
Adam has been one of the most influential figures in my professional career and became a dear friend and mentor over the years. After taking one of his courses at NYU, he hired me to work for his firm. When I moved away from New York, he encouraged me as I launched my own business and we continued to find opportunities to work together. A little over a year ago, we visited a client together outside LA. Reflecting on that trip reminds me of so many of the qualities I admired about Adam. Over dinner, we talked about books and politics. He shared stories of his worldly travels and lit up when he described the interesting people and places he’d encountered. He raved about the accomplishments of his sons and the joy his grandchildren brought him and Shirley. During our car rides, he asked about my family and my father’s health, which was a conversation staple each time we spoke. In client meetings, he provided thoughtful, candid comments and creative ideas that always impressed. He was one of the most well-read people I’ve ever known. He had an unrivaled vocabulary and was an exemplary writer. He was sincere and grateful. He was devoted to his Jewish faith and stood up for what he believed in. He had twice the energy of anyone half his age. Adam was a blessing to me, and his impact is evident in my life daily. I miss him dearly and will forever cherish the time we shared together.

Posted by John Echeveste on April 15, 2020
I, too, knew Adam through our membership in the Public Relations Global Network. We saw each other about twice a year at our membership meetings and he was always a true gentleman and professional. The prayer that he spontaneously delivered at a destroyed synagogue in Wiesbaden still brings tears to my eyes. Adam engaged my firm to assist with a book author tour at UCLA that was a big success. Coincidentally and without my involvement, my future daughter in law became an intern with his firm. I'll always remember Adam as a man of great dignity and integrity with a deep passion for his people. 
Posted by David Fuscus on April 15, 2020
I got to know Adam through the Public Relations Global Network, his firm was the NYC member and my company, Xenophon Strategies, served at the Washington, DC firm. Adam was a mentor to me in running my firm and was always available to give advice, talk me off the ledge when a client went away or just to be my friend. I am sorely grieved at his passing but will remember him fondly. He was an inspired businessman and, most importantly, a good man.
Posted by Alessandra Malvermi on April 15, 2020
I remember Adam as a valuable partner inside the Public Relations Global Network and as a kind person. The PR industry has lost a great professional and the world a wonderful person.
Posted by David Landis on April 15, 2020
I had the pleasure of knowing Adam through our public relations network, Public Relations Global Network. He was a total mensch. I still remember the prayer he spoke for our group to remember lost souls at the site of the Jewish temple in Wiesbaden, Germany. Sean and I send our deepest condolences to Shirley and the family. (David Landis and Sean Dowdall, San Francisco)
Posted by Peiyu Wang on April 15, 2020
The first meeting with Professor Friedman he asked me to change my capstone topic cause it would lead me nowhere, I thought he was tough. Yes he was, because he wished all his students achieve better academic results. Professor is charming, humorous, caring about his students. He is one of the best professors NYU has to offer. I am so sorry by his loss. Maybe he rest peacefully in heaven.
Posted by Elizabeth Renehan on April 14, 2020
I was lucky enough to be one of Professor Friedman’s students while he taught at NYU. I remember my first class with him last year – Ethics of Communications. After our nearly three-hour long introductory course, he smiled and made a joke, “So who’s gonna be here next week?”. Thankfully, I was smart enough to stick in there. Although he definitely put us through the wringer that night, cold-calling on students and asking them their opinion on the ethical stance of hard-hitting cases, Professor Friedman was clearly one of those teachers who would make you a better student and a better person.

It wasn’t an easy semester, but it definitely was enjoyable. Professor Friedman’s sense of humor would always shine through while he asked us question after question, knowing he was forcing us to stand our ground. At the beginning of every class, he would put down The New York Times or The Wall Street journal and joke about who among us was actually keeping up with the assigned readings and news updates. Even if you missed a reading, he wouldn’t mind. He wanted your presence. He wanted to hear your voice. He wanted to actually give you the tools to become a communications professional.

That’s why I wanted to take his Capstone course again this semester – to make sure I was being taught by the absolute best that NYU had to offer. The last time I spoke with Professor Friedman, he had kindly agreed to meet with me before our night class to review my paper. He had read every single word and knew exact excerpts of my paper – I didn’t even know exact excerpts of my 30-page paper. But that’s the kind of teacher he was, wholly invested. I’m happy I told him that night that he was one of the best professors I had because he deserved to know that he was incredibly gifted and incredibly kind.

I know words can only do so much good, but I hope this brought some peace to his family and friends. I am so sorry for this horrible and sudden loss. Professor Friedman’s memory will most definitely be carried on by many, many others.
Posted by Abba Borowich on April 14, 2020
I was profoundly devastated by the loss of my very dear and longstanding friend, Yitz A"H. As memories of him kept reverberating in my head, I was weeping profusely. It was a special blessing to get to know him very well. He deeply touched everybody who got to know him.
He was many things- urbane, sophisticated, very proud of his heritage and being a member of the Rizhiner dynasty, a fabulous dancer -especially at smachot, brilliant, a dedicated friend to many, very loving and warm, very giving to others, a brilliant student, completely considerate of others, perpetually evolving and improving, sharing what he knew and had, and attentive to how you were feeling.
I have set some of this as an acrostic:
Young at heart
Interested in what others thought and felt
Theatrically bent
Zealous in pursuing knowledge
Charismatic all the time
Observant of religion and the world at large
Kind to everybody
Friendship was one of his main goals
Reliable in times of need
Interesting as a unique person
Edifying to his students and friends
Dramatic when he led services
Man among men and to lead men
Advertising his and his clients' points of view and, lastly,
Nourishing friends and students
Sandy joins me in offering our deepest sympathies to Shirley, Yisroel, David and Yosef
With love and sharing your profound loss.
Posted by Debbie Schwartz on April 14, 2020
The first Shabbat that Debbie and I spent in Manhattan, there was a Friday night dinner at KJ. We were sitting at a lovely table with mostly people that we did not know, amongst whom were Shirley and Adam. They were such a warm couple and as it happened we bumped into them that Shabbat when we took a walk in Central Park. Adam and I hit it off immediately and the ladies bonded then too. 

Adam was a kind and gentle soul who always had a warm greeting for me whenever I came into schul. While I was recuperating from my surgery during our second year in Manhattan,, Adam called often and came to visit and encourage me.  We sat together on Yom Kippur and his sincerity during the t’filah was actually palpable. I looked forward to sitting next to him at Rabbi Weider’s Sunday morning class and to exchanging דברי תורה about the parsha or the chagim. 


We called a couple of times while he was in the hospital before he went on the respirator and he only spoke for a couple of minutes; but he always ended the conversation with, “call Shirley”.

Rabbi Lookstein described Adam as a real Talmid Chacham, which he definitely was. He set a good example for all of us which was brought to light with all the chessed he did.
May he be a מליץ טוב for all of us.



Debbie and Billy Schwartz
Posted by Michael Stutzer on April 14, 2020
On behalf of the Ruzhiner community in the Denver area, I know that we will all miss his participation with his terrific family at the DAT Minyan. 
Posted by Andrea Friedman on April 14, 2020
I miss you! I love you so much. I will always love you Zaidy and never forget you. I remember once you took me to the Statue of Liberty. We looked up inside but didn’t go to the top because I was scared.
Love,
Yoav
Posted by Haining Xu on April 14, 2020
I was fortunate to be one of Prof. Friedman's students at NYU. He's class was very insightful, challenging us to become better public relations practitioners and better people. Thank you so much, Prof. Friedman's.
Posted by Xiahui Lin on April 14, 2020
Prof. Friedman was my professor in NYU. He was the best professor I met, and I loved his class so much. In the last semester in NYU he instructed me on my capstone, and he gave me so much advices, which are all inspiring. I remembered the last email he said, “You should be proudd of your work, it’s very nice woring with you.” I will never forgot all the help he offered to me, as well as his wisdom and humor.. Rest in peace.. I will miss you so much.

My deep condolences to Prof. Friedman’s family.
Posted by Yitzi Meyer on April 14, 2020
Itzie and I go back to 1970 when I was one year old. Shirley and my mother became friends in the bungalow colony and have been great friends since. I grew up in the Friedman household and Itzie and Shirley were like an aunt and uncle to me. 
Itzie was always kind and wise and could be counted on for sage advice and insight. 
Among some of my fond memories:
Itzie taught me how to ride a 2-wheel bike when I was about six years old. I went to hang out with Yisroel one Sunday afternoon. Itzie was teaching Yisroel how to ride and he asked if I wanted to try. He was supremely patient and in a short time I was coasting down Ave. N. on my own! I still remember him letting go as I sailed away. I was so proud and he let me know that he was too. Since that day I have spent many thousands of miles on my bike, riding to stay sane and healthy, and I am grateful to him for teaching me that wonderful skill. 
I remember Itzie taking me to Herman’s Sports at Kings Plaza, when I was 11, to buy a baseball mitt for my birthday. He let me pick “any one that you want” and I still remember the cool Ron Guidry mitt with Velcro, which was a big deal in 1980. 
Itzie hired me to intern at his PR firm when I was a senior in college. That was one of my first corporate experiences. It was hard to get any job in 1990 (recession) and he found a way to make room for me at KSCA. For that I am thankful.
Itzie was one of my Aidey Kiddushin and for that Nina and I are grateful. It was a real honor for us to have him participate in our wedding in that capacity.
Itzie was just a great person. His main focus was his family and he was always concerned about them. He was smart, caring, kind, learned. A real Mensch. He will be greatly missed and fondly remembered. 
May he be a Maylitz Yosher for his family and Klal Yisroel.
Posted by Sasha Martin on April 14, 2020
Professor Friedman was the best NYU has ever produced. I loved his class in my first semester and continued to take his class for the next semester as well.
He was a very tough professor, but I can say with confidence and pride, the knowledge and exposure I have in the field of crisis, is only because of him.
He introduced me to a friend of his, whom I now intern for.
Professor Freidman, you taught me so much, you set my career on track and I will forever be grateful to you.

Rest in peace and love. You were the best, Professor!
Take it easy up there...

My heartfelt condolences and prayers to your loved ones.
Page 1 of 2

Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Toni Lee on July 9, 2020
I worked with Adam from 1986 until 1989 when the PR agency I worked for acquired his firm. I was a young PR account exec and he was a gracious mentor and leader. He was smart, funny and a good guy. I think of what I learned from him often and was glad to be able to send some business his way when I later went off on my own. I'm so sorry to hear of his death. May his memory be a blessing.
Posted by Sam Goldring on May 31, 2020
When you talked to Adam you felt he was fully present. He not only listened
well ,Adam took your words in and replied with a cogent response that made you feel your comment was worthy of his consideration.

Posted by Ralph Katz on May 6, 2020
I met my colleague and friend Adam in 2007 when he somehow found our agency and suggested we join the international agency network, PRGN, in which his agency was a member. The first meeting I attended with Adam was in Sao Paulo, Brazil and we spent our free time exploring the City and getting to know one another. From that, we built an on-going relationship.

In recent years, Adam and I met in the City two or three times a year for a catch-up lunch. I'm not sure if everyone knows how "cool" Adam was, but for one lunch early last year, he suggested we meet at Black Barn in Union Square. It was trendy well beyond my usual but I loved it and chose it for the family dinner celebration for my 70th birthday. As my three late 30s and early 40s children and spouses walked in, I don't think there has been a time I ever seemed as with it to that group. They kept asking one another, "Did dad choose this place?" Thanks to Adam, I had a moment where to them, I not only seemed like I belonged in the 21st Century, but that I was a trend-setter.

Adam was a good friend and smart business colleague and I will miss his gentle wisdom.
Recent stories
Shared by Susan Grobois on April 25, 2020
I was so saddened to hear the news about your beloved husband and father.  Yitz was a shining light at Shul! I remember how Brian enjoyed their talks at kiddush and talking about their great outdoor adventures. Seeing your new home on the east side was a treat over a shabbat in July a few summers ago.   I started to read the Exodus in honor of Yitz this past shabbat    His love for Israel and his dedication and guidance for his family were exemplary for all !!

Decades of Remembrances: A Trubute

Shared by Edith Meyer on April 22, 2020
“In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count.  It’s the life in your years. 
Abraham Lincoln

As a long standing friend of Shirley and Itzie I had the pleasure and privilege of knowing Itzie for almost 5 decades.  We became acquainted in the summer of 1971. They had their Yisroel, who was 18 months and I had my two children, Tobi and Yitzi. Little did we know at the time that our friendship would span nearly half a century. 

There are a plethora of memories — too many to mention here—but when I reflect back at what is most salient—I would have to say it was the Shabbosim spent at Shirley and Itzie’s home in Brooklyn, New Rochelle and Manhattan. Their home always exuded the beautiful spirit of Shabbos. Itzie’s erudite and interesting d’vrei Torah were a joy to listen to—always engaging and intelligent   The conversation at the table, was vibrant and the topics, varied. Itzie was so incredibly knowledgeable about a multitude of things and when he shared his insights, it was always articulate, perceptive and astute. As their guest, it was a true delight for me. I got to know their friends and it was obvious how admired and beloved they were, both individually and as a couple. It was a pleasure to be enveloped in their world.  

When I was moving from Brooklyn to Manhattan in 1998, there was a 3 month interval between selling my home and the completion of construction on my apartment. I was prepared to take a sublet in Manhattan for the interim, but Shirley and Itzie  would not hear of it and insisted I stay in their guest room. The New Rochelle guest room, which served as Itzie’s work space, and in spite of that, he graciously and warm heartedly relinquished it to me,  Those were a magical 3 months spent at the Friedman home. This enormous kindness, extended to me by Shirley and Itzie, with such love and hospitality, will never, ever,  be forgotten. 

This is just a mere snippet from a multitude of memories. Itzie embraced life with both arms, and all its many facets — his family, his work, Torah and learning, helping others, traveling, art, biking, running, reading, music — and is a shining and exemplary example of putting so much life in his years. 

He will be dearly missed!
With love,
Edith

From a verrry old friend!

Shared by Willy Nathanson on April 20, 2020
Itzie (yeah that we called him) was my very first friend. Growing up together in Brooklyn. Itzie lived on East 17 off Caton Avenue and I lived on Ocean Avenue and Caton. Our families davened in the Young Israel of Prospect Park (even before it became a Young Israel. 

From ages 5 and up were inseperable. We sort of drifted apart when we attended different Yeshivas.

Itzie was quick to laugh at my jokes and he was really smart... certainly smarter than me. We did play sports ...but that wasn't so much his thing. It sure was for me.

We did reconnect at least twice a year. I'd wish him mazel tov on his Bar Mitzvah (Terumah) and he in turn would send good wishes for mine (Eschanan). We did that as recently 2 months ago. 

This was an incredible loss and I'm still reeling from it. He was lovely guy and for a most important part of my life he was my very best friend. May his memory be a blessing for all of you. 

Israel, I can tell you that you and your siblings are fortunate to have a genetic connection with my friend Itzie.

willy