Eva and Arie Halpern, A Legacy
Eva and Arie Halpern, z’l, were two of only 20 survivors of the 2000 Jewish families who lived in Chorostkow, Poland, the village in which they were born. Spending the war years in ghettos, labor camps and in hiding, they lost most of their families and friends in the Shoah but survived to build a legacy together that few have attained.
Both Eva and Arie overcame still another devastating tragedy after emigrating to the United States, when they both lost their first spouses prematurely. Eva and Arie’s union was to become the fabric of legend as together they again rebuilt their lives with tremendous energy while forging positions of national and international leadership in the Jewish world.
During their 40 years together, the couple pursued life with vigor. Their blended family grew, infused with love and devotion to Torah Judaism, with their five children, Ben, Bella, Shelley, Henry and Nanette, their 16 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Eva was an ardent supporter of Hadassah, Jewish Federation and AMIT. Arie played a major role in numerous Jewish organizations including Israel Bonds, World Zionist Congress, Religious Zionists of Americas, Yad Vashem, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, Jewish Federation of Central New Jersey, the YM-YWHA and the Jewish Educational Center of Elizabeth, NJ.
Despite having to overcome the tragedies in their lives, Eva and Arie never stopped believing in G-d and their philanthropy emphasized their belief in the importance of Holocaust remembrance and Jewish education. Their dedication, tenacity and generosity is a legacy carried on and nurtured by their family and demonstrated by the family’s naming of the Eva and Arie Halpern Hillel House through which will pass future leaders of the Jewish community.
As family spokesman Henry Stein stated: “My mother and Arie would be proud to have their name above the portal of their magnificent new building. It is a natural continuation of their lives as community leaders who wholeheartedly embraced Judaism, Jewish education and the Jewish community.”