Obituary of Benjamin Mendel
DELMAR - Benjamin Mendel, Jr., 87, of Delmar, died suddenly on Tuesday, August 8, 2017, at St. Peter’s Hospital, Albany, with his wife and daughter by his side.
The son of Benjamin Mendel, Sr., and Ruth Mendelson Mendel, Ben was born June 7, 1930, and was a lifelong resident of Albany. He graduated from Milne Academy and then earned a degree in architecture at RPI before serving in Korea as a Lt. in the Construction Battalion (“Seabees”) of the U.S. Navy. Following his military service, he joined noted Albany architect Henry Blatner in 1955 eventually succeeding Blatner as lead partner in the firm that became known as Mendel, Mesick, Cohen. Following an illustrious career, leaving his mark throughout the Capital region, he retired in 2000.
Following a whirlwind 10-month courtship that began as a blind date, Ben married the former Ruth Facher, originally from Luxembourg, then of The Bronx, in November 1957. Had he lived, they would have celebrated the 60th anniversary of their magical marriage in November of this year.
Beyond his vocation, Ben devoted countless hours and years to giving back to his community, receiving countless honors and recognitions for his many contributions. He was President of Congregation Beth Emeth, Chair of Crane Lake and Eisner Camps, Board member of Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield and Jewish Family Services, and received the Humanitarian Award of the Interfaith Alliance of New York State.
Ben was a lifelong fan of the Yankees and [football] Giants, a skilled and avid golfer who “shot his age” four times, and, more recently, became a passionate fan of NASCAR auto racing, sharing this passion with his good buddy, Steve.
In addition to his wife, Ruth, Ben is survived by his two daughters and their families: Lisa Finkle and her husband Bruce of Delmar and their children, Benjamin (and his wife Brittany Haas Finkle) of Brooklyn, NY, Evan of Providence, RI, and Brianna of Steamboat Springs, CO; and Naomi Hitchcock and her husband, Tom, of Lexington, MA, and their children, Shoshana, also of Lexington, and Aubrey, of Somerville, MA.
A memorial service in Ben’s honor will take place at 1:00 PM, Friday, August 11, at Congregation Beth Emeth , 100 Academy Road in Albany Beth Emeth in Albany.
Donations in his memory may be made to the Congregation Beth Emeth Mendleson Chapel Fund at 100 Academy Road, Albany, NY 12208.