Honoring Dr. Michael Singer (ז״ל)

Through the Dr. Michael (ז״ל) & Edith Singer Scholarship Fund

Dr. Michael Singer was born in a small town in the Ukraine, the fifth child among seven. He was raised in a traditional as well as Zionist home. All the children were sent to “Tarbut” Hebrew day school and were fluent in Hebrew.

Michael was a survivor and veteran of World War II. In 1941 he was drafted into the Russian Army and fought the Germans until the end of the war.  He suffered unimaginable loss during this period; his parents, grandparents, and five siblings were killed by the Nazis after being forced to dig their own graves.

In a Displaced Persons’ Camp in Heidenheim Germany after the Holocaust, Michael  met his wife-to-be and the love of his life, Edith Slomovits.  Edith and Michael married and were part of the last illegal Aliyah to Israel in 1948. Michael was immediately drafted into the new Israeli Army and fought for Israel in both the wars of 1948 and of 1956.

In 1959, with the horrors of war finally behind them, the Singer family moved to Los Angeles.  Michael continued his education, earning his Master’s Degree in Hebrew Literature from the University of Judaism and his Ph.D. in Jewish History from Hebrew Union College.

He then went on to become a legendary and much-beloved teacher at Los Angeles Hebrew High School, where he taught for almost 50 years.  Many of our rabbis and local Jewish educators were inspired as his students; through their work, his spirit continues to live and strengthen the LA Jewish Community.

Michael’s bravery and intellect were matched by his kindness.  As LAHHS alumnus, Hillel Dershowitz (’72) put it, he was “A man who survived the worst and yet thought only the best of people.”  In 2005, Michael was awarded the LA Hebrew High “Ateret Chinuch” (the Halo of an Educator) award.  His response was to thank God for every day he was able to teach and state that “teaching at Hebrew High School has been my life, my treasure and my pleasure.”

Dr. Singer, you yourself have been a treasure to us all.

Tzedakah in Memory

In January of 2016, LA Hebrew High established the Dr. Michael & Edith Singer Scholarship Fund to provide LAHHS tuition assistance to families in need.  We gifted Dr. and Edith Singer with a framed donor wall that included the names of those who contributed to the Scholarship Fund in their honor.  At this time, with the blessing of Dr. Singer’s family, we would like to remind you of this fund.

If you would like to make a donation to the Dr. Michael (z”l) & Edith Singer Scholarship Fund, please contact Debbie Holzer at Development@lahhs.org or call (818) 901-8893.

Messages of Remembrance & Love

We join you in mourning the loss of your dear husband/father. Michael Singer was loved and admired by all. He was an exemplary person – wonderful husband and father, a role model for his students, a friend to all who knew him. He will surely be missed.  Please accept our heartfelt condolences. – David and Susan Farkas

Mrs. Singer,
Your husband was a gentle man, a wise man, and a wonderful example of an honorable Jew.  May his memory be for a blessing always.
Stacy Stark [class of 1983] and family

Oh Dr Singer, I will never, ever forget when you’d announce a “pop qviz” [sic] and the fact that you remembered me after 50+ Years from the Class of 1965! –Sheila Winston

An educator for generations. A beloved soul. His name will always be a blessing. –Carolyn (’82) and Richard (’80) Camras

With deep gratitude for a loving man and wonderful teacher.  May his memory be a blessing, always.
The Greenfield Family
(Les z”l, Alice, Michael, Larry, Jonny)

When I joined the Hebrew High faculty in 1972, Mr. Singer was not only generously willing to teach me, but also eager to learn from me. Such kindness along with humility are rare and precious. –Yosi Gordon

In memory of Dr. Singer. We appreciate his life and important contributions to the community. May his memory be blessed. –Dr. Efrat Lobel-Katz and Mr. Richard Katz

LAHHS students who had the pleasure of studying with and learning from Dr. Singer knows what a scholar and mensch he was; his breadth of Torah knowledge was astounding. Lest we forget, however, that Dr. Singer was powerful not only of mind but of body. Although short in stature, Dr. Singer possessed remarkable, truly uncanny strength. I can recall numerous times when students, usually foolish boys (myself included) would challenge him to an arm wrestling competition during break and he would pin down each and every teen. Dr. Singer had the strength of Samson, the wisdom of Solomon and the gentleness of Isaac. His guidance will remain with his students forever. May his memory serve as a blessing. Dr. Singer will be missed but certainly not forgotten. May God comfort Edith (also my teacher) and his entire family. Amen. – Hazzan Keith Miller (’81)

Dr. Singer was my favorite teacher and I was his best behaved and attentive student.   I still am not fluent in Hebrew except for davening but Dr. Singer knew that I was an exceptional student (other than Hebrew).  I’m so glad to have had such a wonderful teacher in Dr. Singer.  I’m sorry that I didn’t stay in contact with him.  May his name be a blessing.  Shalom great teacher. –Stephen Fleschler

Dr. Michael Singer was my teacher, my mentor and my friend.  One of the biggest thrills of my life was teaching at Los Angeles Hebrew High School (at Pierce College), about 10 years ago, in the room next door to his – and spending all of our breaks talking; and continuing to learn from this kind, gentle, scholarly Mensch. –Michael (’68) Waterman

Dr. Singer will always remain very fondly in the hearts and minds of his students, Howard Bernstein and Linda Mendelsohn and of their mother, Sylvia Bernstein-Tregub. He was a treasure and we were all very fortunate to be enriched by his love for teaching.– Sylvia Bernstein-Tregub

We first met in a classroom at VJCC—now Adat Ariel—in the fall of 1963.  Dr. Singer was such a dedicated and loving presence in the midst of sometimes disinterested and disruptive students.  When I saw him at educators conferences after I became a part-time religious school teacher myself he always greeted me with a smile and assured me he remembered me.  (Our sharing a surname certainly didn’t hurt.)  My daughter had occasion to work with him many years after I graduated from LAHHS. We share wonderful memories of Dr. Singer and hope that such memories comfort his family. –Mark Singer (’65)

Dr. Singer was a jewel of a human being!  Always kind.  Always with a smile on his face.  He was my teacher in the 60’s.  One of the most memorable teachers I ever had.  He touched so many lives in such positive ways.  What a legacy!
You did good in this world, Dr. Singer!

Shalom Haver,
Bev Liebross Weise (’67)

Of course, we, like all other LAHHS students from our era were blessed with Dr. Singer as our teacher.  His love and dedication were hallmarks of his teaching–love and dedication for his students AND love and dedication for Hebrew and Judaism.  He always remembered our names, no matter how many years had passed, and even remembered anecdotes about us in his classes.  He was an extraordinary man and a beloved teacher.  He made an incredible impact on all of his students and he certainly leaves a very large and significant legacy in his wake.  We are full of love and gratitude to have had the honor to know and study with such an outstanding human being.  –Janice Kamenir-Reznik (1969) and Benjamin Reznik (1967)

You were a true gentleman and scholar, an inspirational role model to so many.  Todah.  –LL (’72)

My heart is mourning for all of you on the loss of your dear husband, father, and grandfather.  Dr. Singer was an inspiration to all who knew him.
May his memory be forever a blessing –Debbie Neinstein

I am so fortunate he was my teacher –David Braun (’71)

The Singers and the Jacobys were the proud short people of Ramah! –Jonathan Jacoby

I will always remember my days in Dr. Singer’s Hebrew class where we met at Valley Beth Shalom each Monday and Wednesday evening. He was warm, kind, enthusiastic and patient—and that motivated me and my friends   to do well because we respected him and wanted to please him.  We were a chatty group, but he knew how to settle us down with his “Chevre, Chevre,” and that smile. —Ellen Moss Brown (‘75)

Dr. (Mar) Singer was an inspiration to me to continue my Jewish education. While my graduation from LAHHS was 1961, I still remember his kindness and display of love for what he was teaching his young students. May his name be for a blessing to all. –Kenneth Levin (’61)

Dr. Michael Singer:  Legend. Nicest Man Ever. Hero. –Larry Greenfiled (’78)