One of Adath Israel’s founders, Pauline Wexler, 96


Pauline Wexler, a longtime Riverdale resident, passed away March 15, 2017, at 96, while surrounded by family. 

She was born in the Bronx in 1920, the eldest child of Fanny and Charles Zalewitz. She was the sister of Loretta Carmel and Harry Zalewitz.

Throughout her life, she was passionate about the importance of family, community, education and Judaism. And, with her husband Benjamin, volunteered her time, energy and skills to helping build and sustain numerous local and national non-profit organizations.

She graduated from Walton High School, and after leaving Baruch College to help her family, she returned to City College of New York at 40 to complete her bachelor’s degree, followed by two masters of science degrees in education.

She was a member of the Kappa Delta Pi international honor society in education, and was recognized as a gifted and beloved teacher of young children in the South Bronx until she retired.

A 50-year member of the United Federation of Teachers, in 2015, she was among those receiving the David Wittes Award for outstanding education and commitment to the ideals of the UFT.

She and her husband were active and founding members of the Adath Israel Conservative Synagogue of Riverdale, honored over the years for their dedication and service. 

She also held numerous leadership positions in other organizations, including president of the Cortlandt Senior Center in Westchester County.

A young widow of her first husband, David Fraitag, she married Benjamin Wexler in 1951. They were married until his passing at the age of 99 in June 2016.

She is survived by her daughters, Cindy Beer-Fouhy of Crompond, and Dr. Stephanie Wexler-Robock of Yorktown; grandchildren Dr. Joshua Beer (and wife Sarah), Zachary Robock (and wife Jennifer), Max Robock, Linnea Wexler and Kate Wexler; great-grandchildren Sophie and Zoe Beer, sons-in-law George Fouhy and Jerry Robock; and daughter-in-law Dr. Suzanne Roff-Wexler.

Her son, Dr. Richard Wexler, preceded her in death in 2014.

The family wishes to acknowledge the love and support of her extended family and friends, including those at the Five Star Senior Residence in Yonkers, where she lived the past five years.

Memorial donations may be directed to the Adath Israel Conservative Synagogue of Riverdale.

Pauline Wexler,