web analytics
April 2, 2015 / 13 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Meeting Alexander Imich, 111-Years Old


Alexander Imich at his home. Photo by Beth Sarafraz.

Alexander Imich at his home. Photo by Beth Sarafraz.

Rabbi Pinny Marozov, director of Chabad of Coney Island, wanted to do a mitzvah. So when he found out there was a Jewish man living on his own on the Upper West Side of Manhattan – a Jewish man who was about to turn 111 years old – he decided to pay a visit.

The problem was that Alexander Imich, who has been officially verified as the oldest man in America, second oldest in the world (he was even congratulated by the New York State Senate upon his 110th birthday), was not at home. Imich, who had taken a fall in his apartment and was not found until the next day when a volunteer came to check on him, was in Roosevelt Hospital in Manhattan. Rabbi Marozov, undeterred, visited him there and helped him put on tefillin to pray. The rabbi planned a home visit to hang up a mezuzah in Imich’s apartment, and agreed to bring me along.

Imich was born in 1903 in Poland, where he later earned his Ph.D. in 1927, despite the best efforts of anti-Semitic professors to sabotage his thesis. He embarked upon a journey that led him through two world wars, the Holocaust, two years in a Russian labor camp near the White Sea, and finally a new life in America in 1952 (with his wife, Wela, who passed away in 1986).

He worked as a chemist and respected scientist, ultimately trying to prove to other mainstream scientists that the neshama (soul) survives physical death, editing and publishing a book, Incredible Tales of the Paranormal, (in 1995, at the age of 92), expounding on this theme and earning high praise from Uri Geller, the celebrated illusionist, as “the most fascinating and unusual book I have ever read in this field [penetrating] the unknown with the support of many testimonies.”

(Uri Geller, reached via e-mail, commented: “I met Alexander Imich in 1972 when I came to the United States from Israel. I found him to be the most amazing person I have ever met. His interest and curiosity in mind power, the paranormal, and psychic phenomenon – from the scientific point of view – was beyond belief. He is an intellect; a man with super knowledge of the beyond and the infinite. I consider him to be a genius! It was from him that I heard the words, ‘Space is not the last frontier; the mind is.’ My only explanation for his longevity is that he knows the secret of how to extract pure energy from the universe and beyond. God bless him.”)

He suffered financial devastation after losing his life savings in the stock market, and then the loneliness of one who has no children, who has outlived all his peers and most family members, most of whom perished in Nazi concentration camps. His grandniece, Karen Bogen, on his wife’s side of the family says that Imich does have some living, blood relatives: “He has a nephew, Jan Imich, who has children and grandchildren. A few weeks ago, Jan visited with his son and grandson, so we had four generations together. Jan and his extended family live in England.”

Alexander Imich’s 111th birthday took place on Feb. 4, while he was in Roosevelt Hospital. A few days later, he returned home to the same apartment he and Wela had rented in 1965 – weak, with failing eyesight due to macular degeneration and practically deaf – as the hospital had lost both of his hearing aids.

Imich was reportedly in a state of despair, no longer being able to hear and communicate with others, expressing something he had never said in all his 111 years – that he wanted to die, already. And then he stopped eating.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

6 Responses to “Meeting Alexander Imich, 111-Years Old”

  1. Those “hollow ancient eyes”…..speak volumes

  2. God Bless Sweety from Texas Im Inspired!!

  3. Jews don’t need your middle man jesus, we’ve a direct line to the real deal Himself.

  4. Edinson Mota says:

    GOD BLESS ISRAEL

  5. Elisa Stern says:

    Project for Holocaust Survivors at Bikur Cholim
    Chesed Organization has a special, no-charge, geriatric care management program for Holocaust Survivors who are again alone.

  6. Elisa Stern says:

    Oops, that was "aging" alone and not "again" alone. Contact (718) 438-2020, ext 7422 for more info.

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ)
Biggest Democratic Foe of Obama on Iran Indicted
Latest Sections Stories
Food-Talk---Eller-logo

While we are all accustomed to the occasional recipe substitutions – swapping milk for creamer, applesauce for oil – gluten-free cooking is a whole different ballgame.

Until the year I decided to put a stop to all my tremors. I realized that if I wanted my family to experience Pesach and its preparations as uplifting and fulfilling, I’d have to relax and loosen up.

David looked up. “Hatzlacha, Dina,” he smiled. “I hope everything goes well.”

In 1756, when the ominous threat of Islamic terror against Jews reached Tunis as well, Friha became one of its tragic victims.

Are we allowed to lie for shalom bayis? It would seem so, but what might be a healthy guideline for when it’s okay and when it’s not?

The connection between what I experienced as a high school teenager and the adult I am today did not come easy to me.

Isn’t therapy about being yourself; aren’t there different ways for people to communicate with each other?

Jack was awarded a blue and gold first-place trophy, appropriately topped off with a golden bee.

Participating in ManiCures during the school day may feel like a break from learning, but the intended message to the students was loud and clear. Learning and chesed come in all forms, and can be fun.

Building campaign chairman Jack Gluck has led the effort over many years.

When using an extension cord always make sure to use the correct rated extension cord.

There was no question that when Mrs. Cohen entered the room to meet the teacher she was hostile from the outset.

More Articles from Beth Sarafraz
Lessons-logo

I was aware he didn’t want me to “imagine” making coffee in a forced new dream.

Alexander Imich at his home. Photo by Beth Sarafraz.

Imich was born in 1903 in Poland, where he later earned his Ph.D. in 1927, despite the best efforts of anti-Semitic professors to sabotage his thesis

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/features/meeting-alexander-imich-111-years-old/2014/02/28/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: