ERWIN H. BLONDER, of Palm Beach Gardens and formerly of Cleveland, Ohio, passed away on May 9, 2013. He was the beloved husband of Shirlee Frankel Blonder; dear father of Leslie and Jonathan Tramer, Marilyn Blonder Opas and Carol Blonder; adoring grandfather of Anne Brownlee (Johnathan), Liz Tramer, llyse Opas, Henry Barkley and Max Barkley; great grandfather of Jack Brownlee. He is also survived by many cherished nieces and nephews. Mr. Blonder was 92. Services will be held at Suburban Temple on Sunday, May 12 at 1 PM. Interment will immediately follow at Lakeview Cemetery. The family will receive visitors at 27925 Belgrave Rd., Pepper Pike FOLLOWING THE INTERMENT UNTIL 5 PM AND FROM 7 TO 8:30 PM. The family kindly requests in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Menorah Park or Jewish Federation in Cleveland or MorseLife in West Palm Beach, Florida or Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County Florida.
Arrangements Through Berkowitz-Kumin-Bookatz Memorial Chapel (216) 932-7900
Erwin H. Blonder, formerly of Palm Beach and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and Cleveland, Ohio, a civic and community leader and decorated World War II veteran, died on May 9, 2013 at the age of 92. Mr. Blonder, son of Harry and Anne Blonder, was born on March 12, 1921 in Cleveland, Ohio. After attending the University of Arizona and Ohio State University, Mr. Blonder served in World War II as First Lieutenant in the 1st Battalion, 141st Regiment, of the 36th Infantry (also known as the "Lost Battalion"). He was awarded the Silver Star Medal and French and Italian Campaign Medals for gallantry in action.
In 1997, a letter Mr. Blonder wrote to his family during the war was included in Letters of a Nation, an anthology of letters spanning 350 years of American history; he shared segments of this letter in a Veteran's Day special on NBC Nightly News. In 2009, he received the French Legion of Honor, France's highest decoration. He is memorialized in the Texas Military Forces Museum in Austin, Texas and in the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana.
He began his post-war career alongside brothers Jerome and Bernard at the H. Blonder Company, the paint and wallpaper company founded by their father, of which Erwin later became president. He also served as president of the Wallpaper Association. Mr. Blonder was committed to building and strengthening his community. He served as past president of Menorah Park Center for Senior Living in Beachwood, Ohio. In West Palm Beach. Florida, he was past president of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County and the founding president of MorseLife Honoring Senior Living Center. He served on the boards of Suburban Temple, Mt. Sinai Healthcare Foundation and Menorah Park in Cleveland, Ohio and on the boards of the American Jewish Committee, Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County and MorseLife in West Palm Beach, Florida. He was formerly a member of Palm Beach Country Club and Oakwood Club.
Throughout his lifetime, he pursued his passions for travel, opera, bridge, photography, and world history. Erwin is survived by his cherished family: Shirlee, beloved wife of 69 years; devoted daughters Leslie Tramer and son-in-law Jonathan Tramer, Marilyn Blonder Opas and Carol Blonder; adoring grandchildren Anne Tramer Brownlee (Johnathan Brownlee), Elizabeth Tramer, lIyse Opas, Henry Barkley and Max Barkley; and loving great grandson Jack Brownlee.
Funeral Services will be held at Suburban Temple, Beachwood, Ohio, on Sunday, May 12 and at 1 PM. Interment will follow at Lakeview Cemetery. The family will receive friends at 27925 Belgrave Road, Pepper Pike, Ohio following interment until 5 pm and from 7 to 8:30 PM. Memorial gifts may be made to. Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County, MorseLife Honoring Senior Living, Menorah Park Center for Senior Living or the charity of one's choice.