Lee Marsh, who died on March 7, 2015. Photo: courtesy family

Lee Marsh, who served on the Berkeley Planning and Waterfront Commissions and who co-founded the Jewish Community Center of the East Bay, died on March 7. He was 96.

Born in Brooklyn to Russian emigrant parents in 1918, Lee lived a life of hard work and unwavering devotion to his family and community. He inspired hope, integrity and goodwill wherever he went. On the day before he died, his hospice nurse referred to him as “a ray of sunshine.”

Lee and his fellow founders of the Jewish Community Center had a vision to create an educational and cultural center for the diverse community of unaffiliated Jewish families and individuals in the Berkeley-Richmond corridor. It began in a storefront on University Avenue. Just two years later, thanks to Lee’s keen business acumen, the JCC found its permanent home on 1414 Walnut Street. Today, the JCC East Bay offers programs and services for all ages in Berkeley and Oakland, including camp and teen programs absorbed from the Oakland-Piedmont and Contra Costa JCCs when they closed.

Please read the full obituary of Lee Marsh and share your memories of him in the Comments there.

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