Obituaries | Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle


Tauba Biterman

Tauba Biterman of Shorewood died Nov. 11, 2019. She was 102.

Tauba, born Sept. 10, 1917 in Poland, came to Milwaukee from Germany in 1948. She was a Holocaust survivor and a member of the Speakers Bureau of the Nathan and Esther Pelz Holocaust Education Resource Center of Milwaukee Jewish Federation.

Tauba was predeceased by husband Edward Biterman in 1975.

Loving mother of Shirley (Irv) Fuld and Joel (Francine) Biterman.  Cherished grandmother of Julia Steinway, Melissa (Michael) Gurovitsch and Aaron Biterman. Proud great-grandmother of Eliana, Jaron, Noa and Levi Steinway, and Miles and Simon Gurovitsch.

Funeral was held Nov. 12 at the Goodman Bensman Funeral Home with burial at Agudas Achim Cemetery. Memorial contributions are welcome to The Shul in Bayside or the Nathan and Esther Pelz Holocaust Education Resource Center.

Phyllis Raskin Ellis

Phyllis Raskin Ellis of Mequon died Oct. 23, 2019. She was 96.

Phyllis Raskin Ellis was born March 6, 1923. Preceded in death by husband Sidney “Shimmy” Ellis and sister Eleanor Raskin Lyons. Dear mother of Brian (Steven Farmer) Ellis, Dean (Wendy) Ellis and Robin (Dr. Steven) Schopler. Loving grandmother of Jonathan Ellis, David (Aubrey) Ellis, Michael Ellis, Lisa (Brad) Resnikoff and Ellen (Perry) Freifeld. Adoring great-grandmother of Ashtyn and Pierson Ellis; Harry and Maxine Resnikoff; Vera Freifeld. Survived by nieces, nephews and cousins. Special thanks to her team of loving caregivers.

Graveside services were Oct. 27, 2019 at Mound Zion Cemetery. Memorials to a charity of your choice. Rabbi Jessica Barolsky and Blane Goodman Funeral Service assisted the family.

Harriet Gorelick

Harriet Gorelick of Milwaukee died Oct. 11, 2019. She was 89.

Preceded in death by loving husband George Gorelick. Dear mother of Jeff (Lisa) Gorelick, Sherri Gorelick and Amy (Abraham) Fiszbein. Treasured grandmother of Ariel (Jeff) Stein, Lindsey (Matthew) Taylor, Ava Mikkelsen, Benjamin Fiszbein, and David Fiszbein.

Graveside services were Oct. 13, 2019 at Mound Zion Cemetery. Memorials to Chai Point, The Friendship Circle, The Shul, or Congregation Emanu-El B’ne Jeshurun. Mound Zion Cemetery and Blane Goodman Funeral Service assisted the family.

Jay H. Lessing

Jay H. Lessing of Milwaukee died Nov. 1, 2019. He was 64.

Beloved husband of Jo-Anne Lessing (nee Barczack) for 32 years. Son of Fanchon Lessing, brother of Louise (Alan) Fligiel, brother-in-law of Craig (Barbara) Barczack, Cheryl Barczack and Janice (James) Wilkins. Further survived by nieces, nephews, family and friends. 

Jay worked in the machine trades for 15 years before leaving to finish his college degree. After completing his bachelor of arts degree at the age of 46, he became a para-professional at Milwaukee Public Schools, working with special needs and autistic children. He retired in 2015. He loved fly fishing. His love of the sport only increased as he and his wife took many trips to Montana to fish and explore the beauty of the west. He also enjoyed hiking, road trips, history, music and walking the neighborhood with his beloved dog, Ellie.

Sheppard Parr

Sheppard Parr of Boynton Beach, Florida died Oct. 2, 2019. He was 78.

Shepp was born Aug. 29, 1941 in Milwaukee, the son of David and Mildred (Sorkin) Parr. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee in 1963. He is predeceased by his beloved first wife, Lynne (Schefrin), his youngest son, Jeffrey, and his brother Thomas. Shepp married Meryl Friedman Nov. 12, 2005.

Prior to attending the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, Shepp proudly served our country as a member of the United States Coast Guard. With a degree in journalism, Shepp pursued a career in advertising. He was an avid photographer, automobile enthusiast, and deeply cared for all of his family and friends. Shepp was exceptionally involved with the local chapter of the Scleroderma Foundation, including service as a past board member.

He was a member of Congregation Shalom while living in Milwaukee.

Survivors include his wife Meryl; son Andrew (Jody) Parr; daughter-in-law Jody Grossman; daughter-in-law Libby Pollack; grandchildren Brooklyn Parr and Ari Parr; daughters Amanda Friedman and Marissa Friedman; and brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Beth Israel Memorial Chapel and The Gardens of Boca Raton, Boca Raton, Florida, assisted the family. Services on Oct. 6, 2019, with Cantor Ann Turnoff officiating. Memorials may be directed to the Scleroderma Foundation (

James “Jim” Polacheck

James “Jim” Polacheck of Bonita Springs, Florida, died Oct. 11, 2019. He was 73.

He was born in Milwaukee June 11, 1946 and graduated from Nicolet High School, then Morris Harvey College in 1968.

Loving father of Caryn (Russell) Reese, Amy (Michael) Davidoff, Neil (Dana) Silverblatt, Adam (Michelle) Silverblatt, and Rebecca Tanner (fiancé Ofer Shalom). Further survived by sister Joan (Henry “Pat”) Kerns and seven grandchildren.

The cause of death was glioblastoma, a cancer in the brain. Jim was diagnosed in 2013 and fought the good fight until now. He lived every day to the fullest and continued to fight every day with the utmost courage. He was very involved with the Brain Cancer Awareness 5K to raise money to fight this awful disease.

Burial in Pittsburgh on Oct. 16, 2019, with assistance from Rabbi Jamie Gibson.

Memorials welcome to the Head for the Cure Foundation, 1607 Oak St., Kansas City, Mo., 64108.

Frank Rubensohn

Frank Rubensohn of Atlanta died Oct. 21, 2019. He was 76.

He was born July 12, 1943 in Johannesburg, South Africa, and he came to Wisconsin from that city in 1981. He graduated from Athlone Boys High School in Johannesburg in 1960.

He was a member of Temple Menorah. He worked in the mannequin manufacturing industry.  He also partnered with another Milwaukee family to open FotoFast one hour photo processing stores in various shopping malls in the greater Milwaukee area.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Joyce Rubensohn; sons Daron (Sarah) Rubensohn and Joel (Marci) Rubensohn; grandchildren Hannah, 15, Alana, 12, and Joshua, 8.

He had an interest in photography and numismatics. Frank was an only child of Alfred and Gertrude Rubensohn who both predeceased him. Frank lived with multiple sclerosis for over 30 years, an illness he fought with courage, dignity and without complaint. He was cared for by his extremely dedicated wife. Frank was a real “people person” who maintained many longstanding friendships with people around the world despite the severity of his illness. Frank and Joyce moved from Milwaukee to Atlanta in April 2019 to be closer to family.

Burial was at North Atlanta Memorial Park in Atlanta on Oct. 23, 2019, with Rabbi Joshua Helle and Dressler’s Funeral Home. Memorials welcome to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Herbert Usow

Herbert Usow of Boca Raton, Florida, died Oct. 17, 2019. He was 96.

Dear husband of Sylvia Usow for 72 years. Loving father of Jason Usow, Randy Usow, Jody Usow and her husband, and the late Shelley Usow. Treasured grandfather of Samantha, David, Alexander, and Haley. Further survived by other relatives and friends. Herb had an illustrious and extended career as a litigator in Wisconsin. He was a vibrant and engaging man who will be long remembered by all who knew him.

Funeral services Oct. 23, 2019 at Congregation Emanu-El B’ne Jeshurun. Interment at Anshai Lebowitz Cemetery. Cantor David Barash and Blane Goodman Funeral Service assisted the family. Memorials to Congregation Emanu-El B’ne Jeshurun.

Gerald “Jerry” Volk

Gerald “Jerry” Volk of Milwaukee died Oct. 18, 2019. He was 88.

Loving husband of Barbara Wynn Volk. Dear father of Stephanie (Steve) Rubnitz and Mari (Evan) Lederman. Adoring grandfather of Alyssa, Carly, and Jordana Rubnitz; Tanner, Spencer, Carter, and Cooper Lederman. Cherished brother of the late Annabel Volk and Sheldon (Sandy) Volk. Special thanks to Elizabeth Residence and Badger Hospice for their compassionate care.

Graveside services were Oct. 22, 2019 at Mound Zion Cemetery. Rabbi Noah Chertkoff and Blane Goodman Funeral Service assisted the family. Memorials to Congregation Shalom, 7630 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Fox Point, WI 53217.