Dr. Irving Moskowitz, a man who has rightfully been called the Montefiore and Rothschild of our time, passed away last Thursday. A prominent philanthropist, he had a steadfast dedication to the Jewish people and the State of Israel. Condolences to, Cherna Moskowitz, his wife and partner for the past sixty years.
Dr. Irving Moskowitz was a man of action, dedicated to strengthening the State of Israel. He was a steadfast supporter of the right of Jews to live anywhere in the Land of Israel. Irving Moskowitz was born on January 11, 1928 in New York City, the ninth of thirteen children. He was a semi-professional baseball player before entering the University of Wisconsin where he received the Phi Beta Sigma scholastic award for academic excellence. After receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Science, Dr. Moskowitz began practicing medicine in Long Beach, California and then transformed his career as a physician into an entrepreneurial career building and managing hospitals.
As The Irving Moskowitz Foundation website notes, the man believed
that everyone should have the opportunity to succeed in life. He believes in extending to a disadvantaged student the scholarship that will enhance his or her life by ensuring that a child experiences the pride, fun and teamwork of playing on a sports team; or in seeing that inner city sixth graders have an outdoor, hands-on learning experience at science camp.
Dr. Moskowitz said, “I remember growing up hungry, but I cannot sit idly by and watch children in our community grow up without food to eat.” He helped so many people in need “regardless of race, creed, politics or religion,“ often quietly and across so many walks of life.
Israel and Jewish issues were foremost among his philanthropic priorities. Dr. Irving Moskowitz was deeply influenced by the fact that he lost 120 family members in the Holocaust, noting that his tireless work was about “doing the natural thing for a Jew – trying to save our nation.” As he said, “What could be more natural for a person with [my] upbringing than to want to help his people in Israel who are being surrounded by people that want to destroy the country?”
The great prophet Hillel noted: “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? And if I am only for myself, what am ‘I’? And if not now, when?” Dr. Irving Moskowitz epitomized this quote. May his wife Cherna, eight children and more than forty grandchildren be comforted among the mourners of Zion.