Herman S., 92 years old, a Fair Lawn resident for over 65 years, died peacefully at home on March 15, 2013 after a brief illness. In 1999, Mr. Sachs was predeceased by his beloved wife of fifty-seven years Shirlie Auerbach Sachs, whom he lovingly and courageously cared for at home throughout her twelve year battle with Alzheimer's disease. He was also predeceased by his parents Abe and Lillian Sachs; his sister, Dorothy Berner; and by his best friends, sister-in-law and brother-in-law Bette and Herman Auerbach.
Herman was born and raised in Paterson, graduating from East Side High School in 1938. Immediately upon receiving his Bachelor's Degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1942 from Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, he began working as an engineer supporting the war effort---first with Federal Telegraph (later known as Federal Telephone and Telegraph) and then with International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT) in California. In September 1946 he and his father founded a plumbing supply business in Paterson, where he worked until his retirement in 1978.
Herman and Shirlie traveled extensively before and after his retirement. For many years they were very active members of the Fair Lawn Jewish Center and its Theater Group, where they produced, directed and performed in many annual productions and musical reviews. Herman was also an avid ham radio operator and served proudly and enthusiastically as a volunteer with the Fair Lawn Civil Defense team. His lifelong love of technology, his natural aptitude for computers and his self-taught skills in that new and challenging field motivated him to build his own talking computer in 1980 and to assist in the founding, administration and leadership of several local computer clubs in the 1980s and 1990s. Herman always enjoyed serving as a valuable resource and mentor for anyone who needed and sought assistance with easy or complex electronic, computer, mechanical, electric and plumbing problems. Although family obligations in New Jersey regrettably curtailed his professional engineering career after World War II, Herman remained during his entire life an inventor, master tinkerer and teacher of all things technical. He will be deeply missed by all who learned from his aptitudes and skills and by those who were constantly entertained by the wry wit and sense of humor that enabled him to create clever puns on the spur of the moment, and to remember and re-tell the countless wonderful (and not so wonderful) jokes which he learned from and passed on to the many plumbers who frequented his business.
Herman is survived by his daughter Freya Gervasi and son-in-law Joseph of Denville, New Jersey; his son Barry Sachs and daughter-in-law Linda of Kennewick, Washington; and his daughter Hazel Sachs of Tannersville, New York. He is also survived by his five grandchildren, Rachel, Benjamin, Jacob and Aaron Sachs and Alexandra Gervasi; and by his great-grandson Michael Tapley.
A memorial service will be held on Sunday March 17 at 2:30 PM at Louis Suburban Chapels, 13-01 Broadway, Fair Lawn with interment immediately following at the Verein Cemetery, McBride Ave., Woodland Park (West Paterson). Following the graveside service, Mr. Sachs' family will receive visitors at the home of Freya and Joseph Gervasi, 9 Mackenzie Lane North, Denville, NJ until 9 PM; on Monday from 2-8 PM; and on Tuesday from 2-8 PM.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that anyone wishing to remember Herman Sachs with a donation please consider the
, Greater N.J. Chapter, P.O. Box 96011, Washington, D.C. 20090; Compassionate Care Hospice Foundation, 11 Independence Way, Newark, DE 19713; or their favorite charity.