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Ilan, 78, of Englewood Cliffs, NJ died July 11, 2013 after a long and hard-fought battle with cancer. He died peacefully surrounded at his bedside by his wife of 55 years, Terry, his three boys Adam, Marc, and Roger, and his daughters-in-law Barri, Cynthia, and Emily. He is survived also by his sister Barbara Miller and seven beautiful grandchildren Sara, Lauren, Benjamin, Julia, Leah, Eli and Jonah.
He was the son of the late Norman and Anna Plawker who emigrated from Poland in 1933 to Israel where Ilan was born in 1935.
He was raised in Brownsville, Brooklyn and attended Stuyvesant High School. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at age 17 during the Korean Conflict. After discharge, Ilan attended Columbia School of General Studies on the GI Bill and then entered Columbia Law School, which was hopelessly interrupted when he fell in love with Terry.
He wound his way through the world of retail merchandising and ultimately established his own company designing and manufacturing displays. If you have purchased a wrist-watch in the past thirty years, chances are that it caught your eye on one of his designs.
From the time his children were in grade school, Ilan became active in public service, giving fifteen years on the Englewood Cliffs Board of Education, with five terms as its President. He served for seventeen years on the Englewood Cliffs Borough Council with thirteen years as Council President and several years as Police Commissioner. He also served four years on the Englewood Cliffs Volunteer Ambulance Corps. In 2009, Ilan was appointed by Governor Corzine to the State Board of Education and was its Vice President at the time of his death. He was also appointed to the National Board of Education.
Ilan was an avid and talented painter. He loved to play racquetball with his friends. His greatest leisure was time at the family beach house on Long Beach Island where he loaned his endless patience to building sand sculptures with his children and grandchildren.
Ilan will be remembered by all those who knew him for his integrity, independence, outspokenness, and eternal optimism. He will be remembered by his family for his selflessness and unconditional love and support.
We will miss him greatly.
Services will be held Sunday, July 14 at noon at Gutterman and Musicant Jewish Funeral Directors, 402 Park St., Hackensack, NJ with burial following at Cedar Park Cemetery, 735 Forest Ave., Paramus, NJ.
Donations "In Memory Of Ilan Plawker" may be made to the John Theurer Cancer Center, 360 Essex Street, Suite 301, Hackensack, NJ 07601.
Published in The Record/Herald News from July 13 to July 14, 2013