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Jack Lebental


1929 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Jack Lebental Obituary
October 22, 1929 - August 28, 2017 It's hard to say goodbye to such a fun loving and wonderful man. His was a life well lived. Jack was born in Piotrkow Poland, the son of Abraham and Frumit (Zimbler) Lebental. The family emigrated to British controlled Palestine in 1933 where Jack was raised in the close knit rural town of Rishon Le Zion. He had 3 sisters and1 brother plus the family took in 2 European cousins who escaped the Holocaust. As a youth, Jack excelled in academics and sports. He was an apprentice draftsman for the town's architect. He graduated from Realit High School in 1947 as the British prepared to vacate Palestine. At age 16, with Israeli statehood on the line, he joined the commando's (Palmach 6th Division) where he fought for the independence of the State of Israel. In the Spring of 1950, Jack came to the United States to attend college and study engineering. He graduated with a BS from San Jose State University. He played left wing and lettered for The SJSU Spartans soccer team and also played for a semi-pro team in SF. While going to college, Jack worked an amazing series of part time jobs to make ends meet. These included being a hot walker for the thoroughbreds at Bay Meadows Race track, doing dynamite demolition on construction sites, being a shill for "the house" at SJ Poker clubs, tending hothouse tomatoes, changing movie marquees, and being a bus boy. One day in 1952, he was bussing a table at Blum's Coffee shop when he first laid eyes on the love of his life, Carole Sosnick. The two were married on New Year's Eve 1955-56 and were together for the rest of Jack's life. Carole & Jack started a family and had 3 children (Kathleen, David & Daniel) while living in San Jose. Jack settled into a career as an engineer, first working at Westinghouse and then at Philco. In 1966, he was offered a position at Hughes Aircraft in Southern California working on the history-making Surveyor soft landing luner landing program. He moved the family to Rancho Palos Verdes where he would live the rest of his life. Jack spent the majority of his career working for Rockwell, International, on the B1 Bomber and the Space Shuttle projects. He was in charge of the Master Equipment List for these extremely detailed aircraft. During his working years he also engaged in two futuristic side businesses. In the 1970's he was an early designer and distributor of home solar systems. In the 1980's, he invented a horseshoe to provide hoof protection for racehorses. At age 66, he retired from Rockwell. Jack was an avid soccer enthusiast from his earliest days. In 1969, he was one of the original AYSO coaches when the sport arrived on "the Hill". In 1977, he and 4 friends founded the Palos Verdes Soccer Club of which he was the inaugural President. Once he retired, he transitioned to his first soccer love: Manchester United. His love for the Red Devils went back to his childhood. He and Carole were also dedicated fans & season ticket holders for the LA Galaxy. "California Jack" was a consummate horse player. He loved Hollywood Park! His horse playing days started in the grandstand where he learned how to "pick 'em". The guy had an amazing talent for handicapping. He joined the Hollywood Park Turf Club where he was a member until they closed the track down. Jack's other passions were working out at the South End Gym which he was a member of for 20 years and traveling the world with Carole. Jack was predeceased by his parents, his 3 sisters and brothers-in law. He is survived by his wife, Carole, daughter, Kathleen Gimblett, of London. England, his son David and daughter-in law, Melinda Lebental, of Rancho Palos Verdes, and his son, Dan Lebental of Laurel Canyon, his brother, Dr.Emanuel Lebenthal, and sister-in law Hannah, his 3 grandsons, Joseph, Samuel, and Jared Lebental and many loving nieces and nephews in the United States and Israel. He will be remembered as a charismatic, friendly, bright and kind man who cherished his family in both the United States and Israel. Donations in his memory may be made to Temple Beth El of San Pedro.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Sept. 12 to Sept. 17, 2017
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