Loss of Friends
separated by time, gender, lifestyle and circumstance, what unites both Susan
and Nat is that everyone loved them and they always left good feelings in their
PASSED AWAY ON SEPTEMBER
Nathan Halpern Obituary
Nathan Halpern, a life-long resident of New
York City, died Sunday, September 15, 2019 at New York University Medical
Center. He was 89 years old.
Nat was born in Brooklyn on May 11, 1930, the
son of Abraham and Rose Halpern and attended public schools in the borough. His
first job while a teenager was as a stile boy (operating turnstiles) at Ebbets
Field. He was enrolled at Lafayette High School and earned a degree in liberal
arts from Long Island University in Brooklyn.
He was drafted and served in the U.S. Army
from 1951 to 1953, holding the rank of corporal during the Korean Conflict,
seeing combat in a mortar unit while also assigned as a forward observer. Nat
was awarded the Bronze Star with oak leaf cluster, spending much of his service
time alone in a fox hole on the front lines.
Despite his Bronze Star medal, his modesty
and gentle nature precluded his discussing much about war and his Army
experience, other than acknowledging the dangers and anxiety inherent with
being alone in a combat zone. He often said the best day of his life was New
Year’s Day, 1953 when a messenger from headquarters arrived at his position
with Corporal Halpern’s orders to go home. He spent his remaining time in the
service stationed at Fort Dix and Governor’s Island.
After working briefly at Grey Advertising and
in the millinery center, Nat joined the New York City Department of Social
Services in Manhattan as a direct-service social worker, a position he held for
more than three decades until his retirement in 1992. He was well suited for
his profession, because he long before had earned the title “Mitzvah Man,”
doing favors for anyone who needed his help.
Following his retirement from Social
Services, Nat embarked on a new career as an extra in movies and television
shows, obtaining his Screen Actors Guild card and even earning lines in several
productions. He worked in movies directed by Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen and
Ron Howard, among others, and with his 6’3” frame and shock of silver hair, he
could easily be spotted in many episodes of “Law and Order” and other shows
filmed in the metropolitan area..
“Lanky,” as his friends called him because of
his height, was a member of the Bensonhurst Fab Five, a quintet of boyhood
buddies (along with Howard Berler, Hal Maslin, David Schmeltzer and Bernie
Schulman) who have remained a close-knit group for more than three-quarters of
a century. But his quick wit, love of telling jokes and stories, and his
generosity also fostered dozens of other friendships that have endured for
decades, including special relationships with Joe Genser, Erika Pearl, Garry
Cohen and Doug Gould.
Nat also possessed an encyclopedic knowledge
of history, geography, the entertainment world, politics and more. Ask Nat a
question and he immediately could recite names and events related to that
subject, always coming up with the correct information. Nobody needed the
Internet for answers when Nat was present.
Nat Halpern was pre-deceased by his parents
and by a brother, Morton, and is survived by his legions of friends. A funeral
service will be held at 11:30 AM on Thursday, September 19, 2019 at Riverside
Memorial Chapel, 180 West 76th, Street in Manhattan.
military funeral consisted of several soldiers who formally presented the flag
to Nat's friend Ericka and played taps.
just one of a tight knit group of shares in my house and others in the 80's and
90's dedicated to insurrection, mutiny and other hilarious forms of benevolent chaos.
They were a screamingly funny Damon Runyon-esque cast of characters: Murray,
the Jeweler, Irv the Dentist, Irv the Doc, Joe the pharmacist, Ely the Accountant
and one little pudgy guy, Kenny Weisberg who masterminded most schemes. They
were inseparable, Kenny and Nat, resembling Mutt & Jeff.
October 05, 2019
Campbell, The Funeral Chapel
New York, NY
Susan Welt, 63, of New York City passed away
on September 11, 2019. She was raised in Massapequa, NY and graduated from A.G.
Berner High School in 1974 and then from Boston College in 1978 with a degree
Susan was one of seven children born to
Michael and Elizabeth Welt (both deceased). In death she is reunited with the
love of her life, Elvis.
Susan died peacefully in her sleep after a
long, well-fought battle with pancreatic cancer. True to her joyful nature and
indomitable spirit, she did not let her health get in the way of doing the
things she loved. She spent her last months with friends and family, always
ready to embrace another day filled with long walks and gorgeous Fire
She is survived by her six siblings: Lisa
O'Connor (Joel Hodes), Adrianne Welt, Michael Welt, Mary Anne Hartman (Steve),
Nicky Bindler (James) and Eric Welt. She was always a unifying force, striving
to create and strengthen loving bonds among friends and family. She deeply
adored her seven nieces and nephews: Daniel, Susana Mai, Maggie, Becky, Emma,
Connor and Allison.
A service celebrating Susan's life will be
held on Saturday, October 5, 2019 from 2:00 – 4:00 pm at Frank E. Campbell
Funeral Home (1076 Madison Ave. @ 81st St.). Susan loved to wear bright colored
clothing – particularly pink, purple or tie-dyed! We invite you to wear your own
favorite colors to the Celebration of Life.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a
donation to Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research. All donations
go directly to fund research; a private donor funds all administrative costs.
Published in The Default Newspaper on Sep.
Contrary to the serene face Susan presented
she always surprised me at the clarity of purpose with which she often spoke up
at KCA meetings when inspired.
Because she was on the outskirts of town and
a private person our paths seldom crossed but when they did I always felt the
better for it. Though her last few years were filled with pain and suffering
she bore it bravely and kindly.
do not be sad. That is the opposite of everything that Susan was.
so enjoyed you and all the conversations she had with you!
remember that and think of her as she was here on Earth -- sweet, kind, gentle.