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Recent Obituaries

Sam Ginsberg, 102, passed away in Houston. He was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1911 to loving parents Ben and Helen.

Sam outlived his eight siblings, all of them very close.

Sam was a travelling salesman for ladies ready-to-wear and met the love of his life Edna in Kansas City where he made his life.

Sam is survived by his two children, Arnold and Brenda; son-in law, Barry; grandson, Alec and his wife and two daughters, his great-grandchildren. Sam has many nieces and nephews from around the United States. He also leaves his namesake at the Houston Mounted Patrol, Sam the horse, who recently retired from the Patrol. The Mounted Patrol has become a part of our family.

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Denise Renee Holsberger, 43, passed away on Sunday, April 20, 2014, surrounded by her family.

Left behind to mourn her loss is her dedicated husband, Jim, who never left her side during her seven-year battle with cancer. Her strength and fortitude was an inspiration to all her remaining family and friends, who will miss her terribly.

Funeral services were held at Congregation Beth Torah on April 22, followed by burial at Congregation Beth Torah Section in Mount Moriah Cemetery, 10507 Holmes Rd., Kansas City, Mo.

Arrangements under the direction of Mount Moriah & Freeman Funeral Home, Kansas City, MO.


Stephen Jon Morris died on Saturday, April 19, at Village Shalom, following more than three years battling with cancer. He was nursed throughout this time by his devoted wife of 40 years, Bibie Chronwall.

Stephen was born in Denver to Esther and Sidney Morris. His younger brother Arthur predeceased him.

Stephen graduated with a Ph.D. degree in neurobiology from Stanford University. Throughout his life he was motivated by a burning desire to find out how things worked: his quest for understanding biological mechanisms took him a few years after graduation first to Denmark and then to Cambridge University in England, where he worked with Victor Whittaker in the Department of Biochemistry on the mechanism of nerve cell function in the brain. He moved with Whittaker to the Max-Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen, Germany, only returning to the USA in 1982 when he was offered a senior position with the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., followed by a position as program director at the National Science Foundation.

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Esther Abend, age 101, died on April 13, 2014, after a life well lived.

Funeral services were held at Louis Memorial Chapel on Monday, April 14, with burial at Sheffield Cemetery. The family suggests contributions to the Allen Abend Scholarship Fund at the Jewish Community Foundation, Hadassah or Congregation Beth Torah.

Born in Dubienka, Poland, on April 23, 1912, to Yehoshua and Nahama Greenfeld, she was educated in Lublin, Poland. She married her childhood sweetheart, Joseph Abend, in Dubienka in 1936 upon his return from Israel and just days before he left for the United States. She immigrated to join him two years later in 1938. They enjoyed a loving marriage of 41 years until Joseph’s death in 1977.

Esther was devoted to creating a good life for her family. She observed Jewish rituals and kept a kosher home. She took special pleasure in the accomplishments of her family. Esther worked in several family businesses and received recognition for her many years of volunteer service at Menorah Hospital gift shop. She was a volunteer for Hadassah and Women’s American ORT, and she supported organizations in Israel.

Esther was blessed with two sons, Stephen and the late William Abend, and their wives Barbara and Phyllis Abend; grandchildren, Nicholas Abend and his wife Gayle Chesley, Katherine Abend and her husband Kevin Wallace, Sarah Abend, Lynda Freshman and her husband Benjamin Freshman; and great-grandchildren, Jack and Alexander Abend and Anna Wallace. She is also survived by two nephews and their wives in Israel, Moshe and Mira Greenfeld and Noham and Rinat Greenfeld, as well as many relatives in Kansas City and throughout the United States.

May her memory forever be a blessing.

Condolences may be shared at www.louismemorialchapel. 

Arr. The Louis Memorial Chapel, 816-361-5211.


Taras Eugene Bileski was born on Jan. 29, 1939, and passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 8, 2014, after a long bout with pancreatic cancer.

Funeral services took place on Friday, April 11, at Louis Memorial Chapel, with burial at Mount Carmel Cemetery.

Gene grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba, as one of three children of Kasimir and Eugenie Bileski. He worked briefly for his philatelist father and spent one year of college toward an engineering degree.

He learned to ride motorcycles on a 1949 HD FL Hydroglide at age 16. It was his first bike and he never lost his love of cycling and bikes. He acquired later models of HDs and although inherently unstable they satisfied his lust for adventure. He rode thousands of miles across Canada and the United States, always armed with a pack of replacement parts and tools. Many times his ride did not get him home so he looked forward to a day of better touring bikes. In 1964 he went into the motorcycle trade to follow his passion and never retired. He became an importing dealer of Norton and Ducati by 1965 when he established his dealership Chariot Cycle in Winnipeg. Much of Gene’s business relied on mail order and due to numerous postal strikes he moved to the United States in 1985.

He made his home in Minneapolis for 16 years. By this time, the Honda Gold Wing motorcycle, introduced in 1975, opened up uncharted territory in touring. He devoted the rest of his career to procurement of parts and accessories for the Gold Wing under the name Saber Cycle and spent the last years of his life developing the reproduction of obsolete OEM parts.

After discovering his wife, Diane, and lower real estate values in the Kansas City area, he decided to move south to Raytown, Mo., in 2000 where he resided ever since. No matter the disappointments and hardships in his life, he always maintained a philosophy of moving forward, surrounding himself with beauty and embracing his passions.

He cultivated a love of music early in life, listening to great voices such as Italian tenor Enrico Caruso on his 45s. He developed a broad spectrum appreciation of classical and operatic music. He also loved jazz and became enchanted with the blues after picking up a Winnipeg radio station playing Delta blues in Biloxi and began collecting music by Benny Moten, Fats Waller and more.

Gene was a great supporter of the Kansas City Symphony, Lyric Opera of Kansas City and the Friends of Chamber Music. He was highly self-educated, could talk on any subject and his friends and acquaintances were amazed at his ability to recall volumes of facts and historical detail. His love of food transcended from the Ukrainian culture he grew up in where he relished his mother’s pyrohy and cabbage rolls.

He is survived by his wife of 13 years, Diane Krizek; sister, Jeanette (Alex) Warga; brother, Felix; children, Randy Bileski, Billy Adelman, Elin, Kasimir and Gil Bileski, Brian Lee and Rochelle Owings; and grandchildren Matthew and Jennifer Bileski, Audrey Pendergraft and Liam Owings.

He was predeceased by his parents, Kasimir and Eugenie (Negrych) Bileski, and son, Yaron Bileski.

The family wishes to extend its deep appreciation and affection for the staff at St. Luke’s East who cared for his many medical needs, providing him comfort in a warm, loving atmosphere.

Online condolences may be shared at www.louismemorialchapel.com. 

Arr: The Louis Memorial Chapel, 816-361-5211.


Douglas Peck, 63, of Grandview, Mo., passed away Friday, May 2, 2014, at Overland Park Regional Medical Center.

Graveside services were held Monday, May 5, at Mount Carmel Cemetery. The family suggests contributions to Congregation Beth Shalom or a charity of the donor’s choice.

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Dorothy Phelan, 97, of Kansas City, Mo., passed away Tuesday, April 29, 2014, at the Kansas City Hospice House.

Graveside services were held Friday, May 2, at Pine Lawn Memorial Park, Farmingdale, N.Y. The family requests contributions to the Dorothy Phelan Fund at SafeHome (www.safehome-ks.org).

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William Kaiser, 90, of Overland Park, passed away Thursday, April 24, 2014, at Kansas City Hospice House.

Funeral services were held Friday, April 25, at the Louis Memorial Chapel, followed by burial at Mount Carmel Cemetery. The family suggests contributions to The Kaiser Family Tutoring Fund at Congregation Beth Shalom, 14200 Lamar Ave, Overland Park, KS 66223 or Kansas City Hospice and Palliative Care, www.kansascityhopice.org (1500 Meadow Lake Pkwy, Suite 200, KCMO 64114.)

Bill was born in New York to the late Benjamin and Frances (Goldfarb) Kaiser. He attended James Madison High School in Brooklyn and then the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science. Bill enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942 and advanced to the rank of a decorated first lieutenant. He flew B-17 bombers in the 15th Air Force in the European Theater. After his military service Bill returned to Brooklyn and married his wife of 68 years, Marcelle Bergman.

He joined the family business in 1946, selling garment manufacturing equipment. He moved to Kansas City in 1971 and continued in the industry, founding and operating The Bill Kaiser Co. until his retirement in 1999.

Bill was a longtime member of Congregation Beth Shalom where he was an avid Torah reader and coordinator of the lay Torah readers. He received the congregation’s highest honor, The Kovod Award. He was an avid sports fan and loved to share stories about his life.

Bill is survived by his loving wife Marcelle; son, Judd Kaiser, Leawood; daughter and son-in-law, Gina Kaiser and David Gale, Prairie Village; brother, Isaac Kaiser, Lakewood, Colo.; grandson and his wife, Joshua Flaherty and Amanda Tarter; and great-grandsons, Ryder and Chase Flaherty.

The family would like to express a special thank you to Barbara Timmons who lovingly cared for Bill in his later years.

Condolences may be shared at www.louismemorialchapel.com. 

Arr: Louis Memorial Chapel, 816-361-5211.


Harold Mallin, 91, of Overland Park, passed away Sunday, April 27, 2014, at his residence.

Funeral services were to be held Wednesday, April 30, at The Louis Memorial Chapel, followed by burial at Sheffield Cemetery. The family suggests contributions to Congregation Ohev Sholom or a charity of one’s choice.

Harold was born Nov. 3, 1922, in Kansas City, Mo., the youngest of five sons of Ben and Bertha (Goldberg) Mallin, and was a lifelong area resident. Harold and his late wife, Edith, were lifelong members of Congregation Ohev Sholom.

He was a decorated U.S. Army Veteran of World War II, having fought in the Battle of the Bulge.

Harold finished out his sales career at Zep Manufacturing, where he worked for over 35 years before his retirement. His customers were his longtime friends.

Besides his work, he loved to play golf and cards. He was an avid sports fan and enjoyed watching KU basketball and Royal’s baseball.

Harold is survived by his daughters and son-in-law, Bobbie Bresky, Sugarland, Texas, and Karen Mallin and Mark Mynes, Seattle, Wash.; numerous nieces and nephews also survive.

He was always an optimistic, positive person who looked on the bright side of life and will be greatly missed by his family and many longtime friends.

Condolences may be left at www.louismemorialchapel.com. 

Arr: The Louis Memorial Chapel, 816-361-5211.


Gerald Polokoff, 88, was born on June 24, 1925, to Morris and Fannie Polokoff in Kansas City, Kan.

He attended Wyandotte High School, in Kansas City, Kan. After serving in World War II he attended the University of Kansas where he graduated with a degree in engineering. He remained a Kansas Jayhawk fan the rest of his life.

Gerald served as president of Beth Horan Chapter of B’nai B’rith Men and was president of the State B’nai B’rith. He also was president of several Homeowners Associations in Colorado and California. He volunteered for the past 11 years at Memorial Hospital, Colorado Springs.

He is survived by his wife, Shirley, of 65 years; daughters, Stefanie (Gary) Neumann, Andi (Bob) Leopoldus, and Robin (Gary) Patterson; grandchildren, Missy (Corey) O’Brien, Jenny (Jon) Ball, Jessica Patterson and Davyn Housman, Brandon Leopoldus, and Joshua Patterson; 11 great-grandchildren; and sister, Beverly Polokoff of California.

He was preceded in death by his parents and grandson, Matthew Neumann.

Burial was held at Mount Nebo in Denver on Sunday, April 6.

A memorial service was also held at Temple Shalom on Monday, April 7.

Contributions may be made to National Jewish Health Center, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation or to a charity of your choice.


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