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Abraham J. "Abe" Baum

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Baum, Abraham J. "Abe" RANCHO BERNARDO With his family at his bedside, Abraham J. Baum "Abe" passed away on March 3, 2013. San Diego's 2005 Veteran of the Year, he was also inducted in 2004 into the Rancho Bernardo Hall of Fame. He commanded the famed task force (that bears his name) sent by General George Patton to liberate the POWs at Stalag 13 in Hammelburg, and was also part of the Fourth Armored Division unit that liberated the Ohrdruf Concentration Camp. Returning to civilian life after the war, he remained inexorably connected to his military family by working with veterans' organizations wherever he lived. He founded the Rancho Bernardo Veteran's Memorial, and was instrumental in starting a program that sent veterans from all military conflicts to middle and high schools to share their wartime experiences with the students. He was also actively involved in supporting the 1947 war for Israeli independence, and provided counsel to Moshe Dayan, Teddy Kollek, and other Haganah leadership. Abe is survived by Eileen, his loving wife of more than sixty-three years; his children David (Nancy), Barbara (Les) Zoltan, Susan (Howard) Locker, and Eric (Jodi); his sister Miriam Cohen and brother Morton; and, many grandchildren, nieces, nephews, grand- nieces, and grand- nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents Harry and Etta, and his older brother Bernard. A former Prisoner of War, Baum was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, two Silver Stars, three Bronze Stars - all for gallantry in action - and four Purple Hearts. He will be buried with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. A memorial service will be held March 23rd at 11:00 AM at Bernardo Heights Country Club in Rancho Bernardo. In lieu of flowers, donations in his name may be made to either the Fisher House Foundation (supporting American military families) or Elizabeth Hospice of Escondido.

Published in The San Diego Union Tribune on Mar. 17, 2013
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