March 19, 2020 ~ 23 Adar 5780
Dr. Ira Michael Felsen, Ph.D., died on Thursday, March 19, 2020. He was 78.
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Ira was born on February 3, 1942 to the late Martin and Annie Felsen. Ira graduated from City College and received his Ph.D. In Chemical Engineering from the University of Maryland.
Ira initially worked at the U.S. Naval Academy, where his work garnered two patents. Afterwards, Ira started I-Land Lamps, personally designing and manufacturing the lamps he sold. He then shifted into the furniture business and owned a furniture showroom for interior designers. Later, Ira became a sales rep and national sales manager for Tropitone Patio Furniture and Telescope Casual Furniture, retiring following his diagnosis with Alzheimer’s.
Ira was divorced once; his second wife, Loyola, passed away in 2003. In 2012, Ira moved to Louisville and met Helen Friedman, and they fell in love and were married in 2013. Helen lovingly cared for Ira (and he for her), and she steadfastly remained by his side until the end.
Even as his Alzheimer’s advanced and his memory declined, one thing Ira always remembered—which he proudly told everyone he met, often repeatedly—was that “I HAVE FIVE SONS!” Ira is survived by those five sons: Martin (Sarah Dunn); Michael; Liam; Josh; and Brian (Allison). Ira is also survived by his five grandchildren, whom he dearly loved (and who all loved their Papa): Taren, Abby, Zack, Ellie, and Aubrey.
Funeral services (in Louisville) and an ash scattering ceremony (in the Shenandoah Mountains, with Loyola) will both be held at a later date, once the world has recovered from the coronavirus mini-apocalypse and we are able to congregate and hug each other, as Ira would have wanted.
Expressions of sympathy may be made to The Temple, Congregation Adath Jeshurun, Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, or the charity of your choice.