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Jack Abravanel

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Jack Abravanel Obituary
Jack Abravanel

Jack Abravanel was born in Salonika, Greece, on March 23, 1932 to Isidore and Dora Abravanel. A true athlete, winning medals in high school for high jumping, he subsequently became a celebrated soccer player in Salonika, and later in life an avid racquetball player, until he was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 1997. He valiantly fought the disease for 15 years.

Jack, a Holocaust survivor, was released at the age of 11 from the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, spared due to his family's Spanish citizenship. After the war, he spent time in a Palestine refugee camp and then he and his family returned to Greece where he met Lela, his future wife, in a summer camp. Jack followed her to Houston, Texas after she immigrated, where he later graduated from the University of Texas. Jack and Lela were married, and had their first daughter, Doris. Jack was hired by Boeing, which brought the family to Seattle, where Tammy was born. Jack's career as an aerospace engineer, spanning over 35 years, included extensive travel both domestically and abroad. The couple was fluent in French, so his business trips to France were their most memorable.

As a founding member of Temple Sinai, Jack was active in the synagogue, especially the Sunday school. An attentive and caring father, he cherished the times he spent helping his daughters study, excel in sports, and realize their dreams. After retiring, Jack devoted his life to helping raise his only grandchild, Makena. He described the time he spent taking care of Makena as the most enjoyable and rewarding "job" he had ever had.

Jack passed away on September 16, 2012 in Bellevue with his family by his side. The family wishes to thank Evergreen Hospice for the excellent care of Jack, as well as the attentive care he received from caregivers, Monica and Emmanuel Carp, during the last several months of his life.

Jack, a devoted husband for 56 years, is survived by his wife, Lela, daughters Doris and Tammy (Craig Owens), one granddaughter, Makena, brother Sylvin, and two nephews, Isidore and Mario. The funeral and burial service will be held at Sunset Hills Funeral Home, Bellevue, WA on September 20th at 11:00 a.m. Donations in his memory can be made to a .
Published in The Seattle Times on Sept. 19, 2012
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