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Obituaries & Memories

Beth Shalom members mourning significant losses can share photos, obituaries, and reflections about their deceased loved ones for an approximately 30-day period.

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Arnold Slatin, z"l, Avrum ben Shmuel, Oct 2, 1926- Aug 13, 2021

Submitted by Laurie Almoslino

My brother Ian and I were very lucky to have the extraordinary Arnold Slatin as our father.    

Dad was a gentle, caring, loving and intensely loyal man.  He always had a joke at the ready, a kind word to offer, a story to enlighten and entertain, and a big smile to top it all off.  He had more patience than you can imagine.  Things that would send me through the roof were barely a blip on his radar.

Dad was born on 0ct 2, 1926 to Samuel and Edith Yawitz Slatin, in Newark, New Jersey.  He was the third child after brother Ben and sister Gloria. 

He went to Southside HS in Newark.  They had a large Jewish population, and my dad taught us the HS cheer: Izzy, Jakey, Mikey, Sam – we are the boys that eat no ham – oy, oy, oy Southside High!

He followed the lead of his brother Ben, and enlisted in the military during WWII.  He was still in training, when as he used to say: “The Germans found out I was in the military and they surrendered!” Although never actually in combat, he served long enough to qualify for the GI bill.  He earned his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics, and later on, a Master’s in Industrial Engineering.

No story about my dad would be complete without the famous story of how my parents met – he loved to tell this story over and over.

Dad joined a men’s choir, and became good friends with another choir member, Merwin Levy.  On Merwyn’s birthday, he threw himself a stag birthday party and invited Dad.  At one point, dad asked Merwyn if he could get a soft drink and was directed to the kitchen.  He walked into the kitchen and saw a beautiful girl.  As dad used to tell the story, he came up with this very suave line:  “You must be Merwyn’s sister.”  Beverly replied – “well, I am certainly not his mother!”   The two of them started talking and a half hour sped by.  All of a sudden, there was a voice from the living room: “Hey Arnold, the party is in here!”  My dad thought to himself – “Oh no it's not!”  But he did rejoin the party. 

A few days later, he realized he had left something at Merwyn’s house so he came by to get it.  As he was nearing the house, he heard a voice from an upper story window “Hi Arnold!”  There was Beverly waving at him!  He heard a song in his head “I let my golden moment pass me by.”  He thought to himself – I am NOT going to let my golden moment pass me by! I am going to ask her out. 

They dated for several years and then were married on June 29, 1952. 

My brother Ian was born in 1955 and I came along in 1959.  Ian had severe asthma and the doctors suggested moving to a dry climate such as Arizona.  My dad worked at Motorola in Scottsdale for over 30 years. 

My parents were the cutest couple– they were inseparable and did everything together. They always held hands wherever they went.  They loved joking around, and making puns. 

My mom developed dementia and Alzheimers, and dad took care of her 24/7 for years. When mom died in 2015 – my parents had been married for 63 years.

Dad was a smart man, and he worked hard at his job and was loyal to Motorola just like he was loyal in every other area of his life.  But work was not his main interest.  He really liked people and he liked the simple things in life.  He enjoyed making people laugh, and especially enjoyed laughing at himself.  He didn’t have any ego wrapped up in being seen a certain way.  One of his favorite sayings was “Reality is confirmation by others.”  If you gave him feedback, he would consider it, and he would sometimes change his mind or position.  We all know how rare it is to meet someone who is open like that.

Dad was a peace-maker.  He really did not like conflict or confrontation, so he was always looking to soothe things over.  If anyone in the family was upset, he would rub their back or massage their feet – who could stay upset after that? 

Dad loved music – especially musicals or musical theater.  And he loved comedy – Jimmy Durante, Jackie Gleason – that whole set of comics.  You could almost just say their name and he would start laughing.  One time I watched two Marx brothers movies with him – a Day at the Races and a Night at the Opera.  I have never laughed so hard in my life – because when Dad was laughing, it made everyone around him laugh as well, so we kept feeding off each other’s laugh.  Even in recent years, we would be on face time, and sometimes we would just find something funny and couldn’t stop laughing.

To know my dad was to love him.  There was just something about him – he was so genuinely interested in everyone he met – he wanted to hear their stories and he loved to share his own.  I think one of his charming things is that he liked to tell the same story over and over, but somehow it was always fun to listen to it.  Maybe because it was clearly still so fresh in his mind – like it had just happened.   Same with jokes – he would tell the same ones and we would laugh every time.

Dad was really good at encouraging people.  He wanted to see each person do well and be happy.  He saw the potential in each person and wanted to help them reach that potential. He would always say “choose life.”  He also used to say: “Kindness is the hardest thing to give away – because it keeps coming back to you.” 

My dad was an amazing dad, teacher, role model and friend.  May his soul rest in peace in Gan Eden.

Fri, May 27 2022 26 Iyyar 5782