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Joseph Harold Solomon


1928 - 2017
Joseph Harold Solomon Obituary
Joseph Harold Solomon died on November 21, 2017 in Denver CO. Despite increasing symptoms of congestive heart failure and dementia, he was kind and considerate until the end. He was born in Brooklyn, NY to parents Morris and Ida Solomon. He received both a secular and traditional Jewish education, graduating from Madison high school and Yeshiva of Flatbush. After studying engineering at Cooper Union for two years, he realized that his true passion was architecture and completed his degree at Pratt University. For his entire work-life he woke up every day excited to go into the office to solve problems. Joe will be remembered in the New York building world primarily for his work on the original World Trade Center. He was the architectural project manager, overseeing construction administration for the twin towers while a partner in the firm Emory Roth and Sons. (His children have terrifying memories of walking out on I-beams on "take your child to work days".) Joe had the uncanny ability of being able to look at huge sets of technical drawings and immediately find potential flaws that would have an impact upon construction. After completion of the twin towers, Joe participated on a team building the Citicorp building. When New York fell into recession in the mid 1970s, Joe and his wife Joyce moved to Denver Colorado. Over the next two decades, he worked on a number of significant projects including buildings at the Denver Tech Center, Denver International Airport, the Denver Convention Center, and others. His love of architecture and design informed his entire life. He shared his knowledge and passion for aesthetics with his family, friends, and younger architects. Joe was an enthusiastic contributor to his community. He served on his neighborhood association boards for many years, first in Great Neck, NY, and then in Denver, CO. While president of the Lakeridge Association he spear-headed an effort that transformed Wolcott Lake from a fetid pond bordered by concrete pavers to a healthy aerated lake lined by boulders and plants. Joe and Joyce took great pleasure sharing their lake-side home, hosting large annual parties for various organizations. Amid the commotion of these events and the exuberant chaos of the many parties in NY, he was always an anchor of calmness. He was a joyful sailor, convivial tennis player, fastidious gardener, meticulous planner and photographer of travel. His children recall singing folksongs non-stop on camping trips and his accordion playing in the attic. He was a debonair artist and pipe-smoker: when traveling in Central America he was often mistaken for a famous Mexican actor. Joe was keenly interested in his heritage and those Jewish principles led him to be civically active. He and Joyce were supporters of numerous museums, cultural institutions, and charities. Joe is survived by his wife of 67 years, Joyce Solomon; his three children: Beth (John Newman) of Madison, WI, Amy Lee (Andy Brier) of Berkeley CA, and Pia Sabina Valeriana of Denver, CO; his sister Esther Samuels of Monroe Township, NJ; and many friends. His kindness, courtly manners, generosity, and gentle humor will be missed by many. A party to celebrate his life will be held at the house in the late spring.
Published in Denver Post on Dec. 17, 2017
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