Golman, former Israel Bonds leader, dies at 90

Golman, former Israel Bonds leader, dies at 90

BY ROBERT A. COHN, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF EMERITUS

Louise E. Golman, a past president of the Jewish Federation Women’s Division, the first woman to serve as chair of the St. Louis Committee for State of Israel Bonds and a 1982 St. Louis Globe-Democrat Woman of Achievement, died Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2007 after a long struggle with congestive heart failure. She was 90 years old, and a resident of Westwood, Mo. at the time of her passing.

Mrs. Golman was remembered as a loyal wife to the late Sam I. Golman, to whom she was married for 57 years, a warm and loving parent and grandparent and as a dedicated volunteer and leader in Jewish organizations. Rabbis Jim Bennett and Jeffrey Stiffman, and family members joined in paying tribute to Mrs. Golman in the funeral services last week at Congregation Shaare Emeth, where she had been an active member for many years.

In his eulogy, Rabbi Jeffrey B. Stiffman, Rabbi Emeritus of Shaare Emeth, said, “Have we ever known a person like Louise Golman, who was brilliant, wise, strong and compassionate at the same time? How many touch so many lives in such a delicate and kind manner? We mourn deeply today because we have lost such a very special woman.”

Rabbi Stiffman added, “Louise felt so lucky to be part of such a loving extended family. She told me of her pride in the Eastman family, her love for Shirley and her late Leonard. She revered the traditions and the warmth of her family. She was a loving sister-in-law to her Gene, Leonard and her late Marion. A loving aunt and great-aunt, she was revered by her family.”

Born as Louise Eastman on Dec. l3, 1916, Mrs. Golman graduated from Soldan High School, where she was class valedictorian, and from Washington University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, national scholastic honorary. Rabbi Stiffman recalled, “as a young woman, Louise taught remedial reading to inner city students, and later volunteered to tutor young children who needed her help. She was a devoted and proud Jew, loyal to our Congregation Shaare Emeth, and supporting all of our efforts.”

Among Mrs. Golman’s numerous activities, she served as president of the Jewish Federation Women’s Division and was a former vice president of the JFed Board of Directors. For the three years ending in 1981, she served as chairwoman of the board of the St. Louis Committee for State of Israel Bonds, the first woman to hold that position, and one of the first nationally. She became one of the first women to serve on the National Israel Bonds Cabinet. She was also a member of Hadassah, Pioneer Women (now Nadah Women), B’nai B’rith Women (now Jewish Women International) and the Miriam Lodge of the United Order of the True Sisters, in addition to being a member of the Sisterhood of Shaare Emeth (now Women of Reform Judaism).

In 1982, Mrs. Golman was named a St. Louis Globe-Democrat Woman of Achievement, in recognition of her many community activities and leadership positions, in the category of “Community Service.”

Also offering words of tribute at Mrs. Golman’s memorial service were her sister Shirley (Leonard) Rosen and son-in-law Ken Kaplan (Sally). “My sister Sylvia and I can never remember an argument with Louise,” said Shirley Rosen. “As a role model, she could not be beat,” she added. Daughter Sally Kaplan said, “I have lost my best friend; she taught me everything; her compassion and her energy were boundless.” Daughter Alice said, “she was my closest friend and neighbor; we share so much.”

On behalf of daughter Ellen, Rabbi Stiffman read a number of words she associates with her mother, including, “golden aura, giving, Phi Beta Kappa from Washington U.; compassionate; statuesque; lover of art, fine food and wine.”

Rabbi Stiffman asked, “How could we not love her? She was not only elegant and beautiful, but she was also open, caring, warm and inviting. To meet her was to be embraced by her warmth. That smile, those beautiful eyes radiating care, the gentle words of welcome are memories we’ll never lose.”

Mrs. Golman’s husband of 57 years, Sam I. Golman, died in 1997. Survivors include daughters Ellen Golman; Sally (Ken) Kaplan and Allison (Roger Kepner) Burgess; grandchildren Eric and Jessica Kaplan; she was sister and sister-in-law of the late Leonard (the late Marion) Eastman, Sylvia (Eugene) Weissman and Shirley (Leonard) Rosen.

Following the funeral services at Congregation Shaare Emeth, burial was at the New Mount Sinai Cemetery in Affton, Mo.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Samuel I. Golman Passport to Israel Fund, c/o Congregation Shaare Emeth, ll645 Ladue Road, St. Louis, Mo 63l46, the Jewish Federation of St. Louis, 12 Millstone Campus Drive, St. Louis, Mo. 62l46, or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

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