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October 10, 2015 / 27 Tishri, 5776
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Arlen Specter, Jewish Former U.S. Senator From PA, Dies At 82


Arlen Specter, U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania 1961  – 2011, has died.  Specter was 82 years old.  Specter is survived by his wife, Joan, his son Stephen, his son Shanin, daughter-in-law Tracey, and 4 granddaughters.  Specter was Jewish and over his lifetime belonged to several different synagogues.  His granddaughters all attended a Conservative Jewish day school in the Philadelphia suburbs.

Specter survived brain  cancer and other maladies, but finally succombed to non-Hodgkins Lymphoma Sunday morning, October 14.  Specter died in his Philadelphia home.


About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the U.S. correspondent for The Jewish Press. A graduate of Harvard Law School, she previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools. You can reach her by email: Lori@JewishPressOnline.com

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One Response to “Arlen Specter, Jewish Former U.S. Senator From PA, Dies At 82”

  1. Liad Bar-el says:

    Arlen Specter will always be remembered for the good in my family.
    After spending a couple of years in Israel and by me not humbling myself to overcome the daily tests for character improvement, I returned to live in America only to be faced with worse conditions of which brought me to beg HaShem to return me back to Israel. What happened?

    I applied to work in a secret position for the Department of the Navy North Eastern Engineering Command in Philadelphia. The office that accepted me was excited to receive me. As I was clearing off my desk on a Friday before I was to start work on the following Monday, I received my first phone call. It was from personnel. “What are you doing here? You cannot start work until we obtain more background information on you!” This went on for three months. When personnel stated to me that too much time had pass and they need to fill the position without me, I contacted Senator Arlen Specter. Within ten days, I started to work in the Department of the Navy.

    This might not seem to be very important; however, when I applied and was accepted for that position, Jonathan Jay Pollard was on the headlines of every newspaper. When the personnel office looked at my background for security reasons and found that I was a Jew and had lived in Israel, they didn’t really know what to do. Security was tightened up all over the Naval base and secret information was reassigned away from my position and given to others, etc, etc, etc. In short, the next three years were like working in hell which drove me back to Israel. Baruch HaShem!

    Thank you Arlen Specter! May your family receive peace from Heaven for their loss of you. You were a great, caring and helpful Jew.

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