Florence Werb Educator, active in Temple Israel and JCC, 'lived a life of intention' With family by her side, Florence Werb passed away peacefully in her downtown Manhattan home on June 6, 2021. Born in 1927 to Max & Tilly Yanowitz, Florence was influenced by the events of her youth including the Depression and World War Two. She and her younger brother, Herbert, grew up on Staten Island a flight up from her parents' market. In the store, she saw the way her parents would compassionately extend credit for groceries to neighborhood customers, even as they themselves were in need. At 16, she met the love of her life, Lewis Werb, but their relationship was interrupted when he enlisted and was deployed to Germany to serve his country. Florence was a woman of her time. She cherished her right to vote and pursued an education, graduating from NYU as the first woman in her family to achieve a higher education. Florence fondly remembered sitting in Washington Square Park doing homework and watching Eleanor Roosevelt walk her dogs. She would go on to earn her master's degree in education and teach in the New York City public schools. After coming back from the war and marrying, Lewis and Florence had four boys, who she is survived by. The years spent raising that crowd influenced her greatly when she re-entered the job market in the early 1970's. It was no wonder that she could handle school children, and with all of her skills honed, she became the most feared substitute teacher on Staten Island. Florence was active in the community. She was a founding member of Temple Israel on Staten Island in the early 1960's, and thirty years later when they needed a new front entrance, she and Lew dedicated the new doors. They also supported the Staten Island Jewish Community Center, and Florence was especially proud of her part in the creation of the front faade of the building with Jerusalem stone. Florence was an extremely generous person who never forgot the selflessness of her parents and always devoted herself to charities and helping others. Florence lived a life of intention and was always reaching for goals. She and Lewis travelled extensively and took up photography, leaving behind thousands of pictures from around the world. Florence believed that there was nothing more valuable than education and did everything she could to ensure that each of her children and grandchildren stayed in school as long as possible. Florence loved her family and she managed to spend time with each and every one of her twelve grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. She was meticulous about sending out cards to all of them for all occasions. Hers was a life well lived. The large family which survives Florence was her greatest joy. In her final hours, she had two great-grandchildren at her bedside and another on FaceTime, giving her a great sense of peace. Services will be held on Friday, June 11th at 10 am Menorah Chapels, 2145 Richmond Avenue, Staten Island, NY. In lieu of flowers, donations to the JCC of Staten Island, 1466 Manor Rd., Staten Island, NY 10314 would be appreciated.
Published in Staten Island Advance from Jun. 9 to Jun. 11, 2021.