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WEINSTEIN, Sidney Moses Age 99, chemist and Jewish community leader, passed away Monday, July 18, at his home in Coolidge Corner, Brookline. He was born in Portland, Maine, the fifth and youngest child of Lithuanian immigrants, Jacob and Kuna Leah Weinstein. His father died in a car accident in June, 1918. His mother never remarried. Sidney was married to Ethel Blanck, from Providence, Rhode Island, from 1940 until her death in 1998. Together they raised three sons. He was married to Sima Jelin, of South Orange, New Jersey from 2001 until her death in 2010. Sidney graduated from Portland High School in 1933 and moved to Boston, Massachusetts, to live with his brother Lew and Lew's wife, Selma. After working for a year, he attended Boston Latin School as a postgraduate student while keeping his job as an usher in the Fenway Movie Theater. He graduated Harvard College cum laude in 1939 with a B.A. in chemistry, having worked as a theater usher, night watchman, and construction worker. He received his M.S.(1943) and Ph.D. (1951) in chemistry from New York University continuing to work full-time. Upon graduation from college, he relocated from Boston to New York City, which provided a better job market for Jewish chemists. As a research chemist, he achieved consistent innovative success. This employment extended through World War II, where his research and development shifted to war-related applications. Sidney's talent and ambition enabled him to start his own business. As founder of Chemplex in 1952, he soon achieved a breakthrough discovery in the dyeing of synthetic fibers, such as polyester(Dacron). This invention led to a merger with Tanatex Chemical in 1957. Sidney served as executive vice-president and head of research at Tanatex from 1957 to 1968. When the company was sold to a larger corporation, he eventually became president until his retirement in 1974. Sidney continued to pursue his passion for physical science, becoming an adjunct chemistry professor at County College of Morris from 1977 to 1985. Sidney's civic, philanthropic, and political activities spanned more than six decades. He started working for the Americans for Democratic Action in 1947 and became New Jersey state chairman in 1957. In the 1950s he became involved in the Jewish Federation of Essex County. In 1967 he became president of the Jewish Federation, now the Jewish Community Federation of Greater MetroWest. Sidney started working with the New Jersey Y camps in 1955 and became president in 1962. He served as chairman of the board of overseers of the Philip Lown Institute for Contemporary Jewish Studies at Brandeis University in 1969. Sidney helped establish the Jewish Community Housing Corporation and was its first president in 1976. He was a member of the New Jersey Educational Facilities Authority (1978-1989) and served as chairman (1982-1987). First appointed by Governor Brendan Byrne, a Democrat, he was reappointed by Governor Thomas Kean, a Republican. He was also a member of the New Jersey Supreme Court District Arbitration Committee. After the death of his second wife, Sidney returned to his New England roots and home of his beloved Red Sox. There, he continued to relish his role as grandparent and family elder. He created a family community of warmth, kindness, and righteousness. Sidney is survived by his sons David, Daniel, and Michael; daughters-in-law Laura Foner, Evie Weinstein-Park, and Martha Matlaw; and grandchildren Zoe & Andy, Stevie, Simon & Marina, Hannah & Ted, Ben & Kira, Max, Jonathan & Hannah, and Rebecca, as well as many other cherished family members. Services at Levine Chapels, 470 Harvard St., Brookline on Friday, July 22 at 9:30am. Burial to follow at Sharon Memorial Park, 40 Dedham St., Sharon. Memorial observance will be at the home of Michael and Martha on Sunday, July 24 from 2-5:00pm and on Monday, July 25 at the home of Dan and Evie from 2-5:00pm and 7-9:00pm. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory can be made to Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest (NJ), 901 Route 10, P.O. Box 929, Whippany, NJ 07981.

Levine Chapels, Brookline


Published in The Boston Globe on July 20, 2016
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