Marshall Henry BERKSON
1925 - 2020
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Marshall Henry Berkson, World War II Veteran and business entrepreneur, born February 9, 1925 in Chicago, IL passed away on June 22, 2020 in Miami, FL. Marshall was raised on the South Side of Chicago by loving parents, Oscar and Sylvia Berkson. An honor student and talented athlete, he attended Hyde Park High School, then went on to earn a basketball scholarship to DePaul University, one of the best basketball programs in the country, playing as a starter with teammate George Mikan under legendary coach Ray Meyer, both in the Basketball Hall of Fame. He eventually earned an MBA at the University of Chicago. Berkson served in the 8th Armored Division, 58th Armored Infantry Battalion, Company C fighting across Europe under General George S. Patton. He fought during the Battle of the Bulge and was awarded the Bronze Star for Valor for volunteering to go behind enemy lines. He was among the first troops to enter and liberate a Nazi concentration camp, a satellite of Buchenwald. He has been interviewed by the 8th Armored Division and his interview has been recorded in the Library of Congress. After the war, he served in Germany in the Army of Occupation and was a lieutenant in Army Intelligence. For his heroism, Berkson was named a Knight of the French Legion of Honor by President Sarkozy of France "as a sign of France's infinite gratitude and appreciation for your personal and precious contribution to the United States decisive role in the liberation of our country during World War II." He has been given the rank of Chevalier created by Napoleon in 1912 to "acknowledge services rendered to France by persons of great merit." Berkson additionally was recognized with a ceremony by the Holocaust Documentation and Education Center and presented with an American flag that flew over the Capitol Building in Washington, DC. In 1950, Berkson moved to Miami, FL where he and a friend founded the Miami Airconditioning and Heating company. He also co-founded Thermal Industries of Florida and invented a refrigerant leak detector still in use today. In 1960, at the age of 44, he sold his company to Westinghouse Corporation and retired. In his retirement, he became actively involved in the real estate business as an investor, real estate broker, and appraiser. He also became Chairman and President of the South Shore Hospital and Medical Center in Miami Beach, FL, affiliated with the University of Miami. Berkson still found time to coach an Optimist Club basketball team, with one player being famous actor Andy Garcia. Marshall also played the drums and was a member of the Local Musician's Union 655 performing with his Dixieland combo for various charities, universities, and civic clubs. He was awarded by Mayor Sy Gelber as an Honorary Citizen of the City of Miami Beach, received a key to the City of Miami Beach in 1986, and March 17, 1994 was named Marshall Berkson Day. For his 90th birthday, he was awarded with another key to the City of Miami Beach, a Centennial coin, and the proclamation of February 9, 2015 as Marshall Berkson Day by Mayor Philip Levine. Marshall Berkson was married for 41 years to Lyla Feldman Berkson before her death in 1993. He is survived by his three beloved children Ellen Ecker (Barry Neumann), Robert Berkson (Ann), and Lori Stoll (Jon, deceased); seven grandchildren, Lisa Ecker, Amy Ecker Dodd (Andrew), Matthew Berkson, Michael Berkson (Dina), L.J., Jack and Liana Stoll; great-grandchildren Lyla Dodd, Miles Berkson; significant other Lynda Fromkin; and extended family Jesse Stoll, and Lauren (Chip) and daughter, Sydney Stahl. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Parkinson's Foundation or the Jewish Federation.

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Published in Palm Beach Daily News on Jun. 28, 2020.
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July 4, 2020
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July 1, 2020
Thank you sincerely for your message with the sad news of the passing of your loved one - Marshall Berkson, a gallant soldier and warrior for freedom in WWII with the 8th Armored Division

Please accept the deepest sympathy from the 8th Armored Division Association, original veterans and comrades from the Division and the membership, friends and families. We share your grief at the loss of yet another warrior hero of the 8th Armored Division who served and sacrificed to defend the nation and preserve liberty.
Marshall was a proud member of the 8th Armored Division Association and will be remembered via our Memorials to be placed and dedicated at the Museum of the Army and the Army War College at Carlisle, PA. to the memory of the veterans.
Thank you
With deepest sympathy,
Andy Waskie,Jr, president
8th Armored Division Association
Andy Waskie
Served In Military Together
June 29, 2020
I got to know Marshall after moving to Florida in 1985. I fondly remember all of the conversations we had about the Berksons family history, something we both took a keen interest in. He was always jovial, engaging and hospitable. We also enjoyed talking about sports, his experiences during the war, and politics. He always took an interest in my sons, and grandchildren. He led a productive and accomplished life, and his memory should serve as an inspiration to the entire family. He will be sorely missed by many.
Our deepest condolences to Lynda, Ellen, Lori , Robert, and the entire family. May he rest in peace.
Your cousins, Lowell, Liesa and family
Lowell Berkson
June 28, 2020
No one can prepare you for a loss; it comes like a swift wind. However, take comfort in knowing God is with you and your family lean on him in your time of need. Please accept my most heartfelt condolences.
Simone Taylor
June 28, 2020
He was a terrific person and businessman. He served his country and this community with honor and integrity. He always knew the right thing to say and was warmly liked even by those who didnt always agree with his views. He was an old school gentleman and will be sorely missed.
Michael Kosnitzky
June 27, 2020
I worked for the Berkson family for many years. Mr. and Mrs. Berkson were very kind and respectful to me and so were their children Ellen, Robert and Lory. Even though I no longer worked for the family I was still in contact with them. My annual call to Mr. Berkson on his birthday was a joy to him. He would say "Joice you never forget my birthday" with a boisterous laugh. Rest in peace Mr. B.
Joyce Taylor
June 27, 2020
Marshall and Lyla were close friends with my parents Zebulon J Brodie and Beatrice Brodie ...Ellen and I are best friends....we spent so much time together enjoying each others company. I remember spending time at the Berkson's house with Ellen, her siblings Bobby and Lori ,her Mother Lyla always so loving and Marshall playing the drums having fun...we had wonderful times together.Marshall loved his family and lived an exceptional life!
Suszanne Brodie Kaiser
June 26, 2020
Marshall was a very special person. I knew him since I was buddies with Lori and the family. He was always there for all. I remember people always calling for him for advise and everything. Mr. Marshall Berkson was a very important person. He will be missed. He always had a smile.. My buddy Lori used to tell me my dad is amazing and very smart. I used to say to Lori you are so much like your dad.. We should only hear good
Jenny and jordan bublick
June 26, 2020
I remember Mr. And Mrs. Berkson well, having grown up on Hibiscus Island. My parents socialized with them ...they were always warm and welcoming. My condolences to Ellen, Lori, Robert and the grandchildren.
Robert Sutnick
June 26, 2020
May your hearts soon be filled with wonderful memories of joyful times together as you celebrate a life well lived.
June 26, 2020
Marshall was unique. There was only one. He was the nicest happiest guy on the planet. He always took time to be kind to everyone. I loved him very much he was one of my all time favorite people and he had the way of making everyone feel important to him. He supported and cheered on his grandchildren at many a swim lesson and he was the best Dad to Lori in the world! My heart goes out to your whole extended family. He was a true legend.
joany arpe
June 25, 2020
My grandpa was selfless, kind, brave, and intelligent. He had a sense of humor like no other and deeply cared about his family, yet he was a serious businessman and American soldier. He will always be my inspiration and I will forever love and miss him. 95 INCREDIBLE YEARS!
Liana Stoll
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