March 29, 2012 ~ 16 Nissan 5781
William Levy, 94, died March 29, 2021, in Boynton Beach, Florida, after a short illness. On July 2, 1926, he was born in Louisville, Kentucky, to Victor and Rebecca Greenberg Levy. After he graduated from Male High School, he attended the University of Louisville before being drafted. William served in the U.S. Army in France and Germany during World War II. Upon his return home, he earned a B. S. degree in Business from Indiana University.
A life-long Louisville, Kentucky resident, it was his dream to retire and spend the winter in Florida. At age 84, he decided to relocate permanently. The fantastic weather meant that he could perfect his golf game, and he spent many hours on the links both in Louisville and Florida. He belonged to Standard Club, Cardinal Club, Boca Teeca, and Westchester Country Club. He especially enjoyed playing in tournaments with his sons and grandsons.
As an avid Bridge player, he enjoyed competitive play at Coral Lakes Bridge Club, often coming in on top of their division. He also enjoyed playing at the Jourdan’s Bridge Club and the Louisville Bridge Club with numerous good friends as partners (who would always use his system). He felt his biggest thrill was playing at Jourdan’s with his grandson, where they won their division.
His friends and neighbors in Florida considered him a real Southern Gentleman, always friendly, interested in others, and congenial in all situations. He loved live entertainment, attending every performance available in Louisville and Florida, often as a season subscriber.
The Louisville Cardinals sports teams were a life-long passion of his. The last thing he watched on television was the Louisville Cardinals Women’s Basketball victory over Oregon to advance to the Elite 8. Bill was a season ticket holder for over 50 years for basketball and football.
He loved to travel, especially with the family. His favorite family vacations included a Mediterranean Cruise, a week on Hilton Head Island, celebrating his ninetieth birthday, and a Las Vegas trip to renew his marital vows with Judith and their family at the Elvis Chapel. But the best trips of all were the bonding trips he went on with his grandsons after they graduated from high school.
He spent his career, spanning more than 50 years, working in the family business, Levy Lumber, and Building Center. Founded in 1926, Levy Lumber and Building Center was a trailblazer in the Home Center Industry and one of the first “Do It Yourself” businesses in the country. In 1990 the company received the prestigious National Home Center’s Pioneer of the Year Award from the National Home Center Association. At the time, William Levy served as Levy Lumber and Building Centers vice president. He also served as president of the National Supply Distributor’s Association of America.
Levy provided leadership to many non-profit organizations in Louisville. Besides serving on the Metro United Way Self-Support Committee, he served on numerous Louisville Jewish Community Boards, including Jewish Hospital, Jewish Community Center, Jewish Family & Vocational Service, Louisville Hebrew School, Four Courts Senior Center, and Congregation Adath Jeshurun.
As vice-president of the Jewish Community Federation, Levy took particular interest in the senior population. In 1976, he served as the first chairperson of the Federation’s Council on Aging. This committee started the first nutrition program for seniors at the Jewish Community Center. Also, it provided the Jewish community with transportation for the elderly to attend programming at the Jewish Community Center. Levy was chairperson of the Federation’s Housing for the Elderly Committee, tasked to build a HUD apartment building for elderly and disabled seniors. They accomplished this goal, in record time, as Shalom Tower, a 150-unit building for senior citizens and disabled individuals. Its proximity to the Jewish Community Center gives seniors the ability to participate in JCC programming without needing transportation. Levy went on to serve as chairperson of the Shalom Tower board.
William was a member of Congregation Adath Jeshurun in Louisville, Temple Torat Emet in Boynton Beach, St. George Masonic Lodge, Scottish Rite, Kosair Temple Shrine, and B’nai B’rith. He was a Kentucky Colonel, Kentucky Admiral, and a member of numerous other social organizations.
He was honored by the French government with the French Legion of Honor Medal for his service in France during World War II.
In recognition of his service to the community, Levy was honored in 1981 with the B’nai B’rith “Man of the Year” Award and the Mizrachi Women Man of the Year Award. In 1990 he received the Council of Jewish Federations’ National Endowment Achievement Award, and in 1994 he received the Jewish Community Federation’s Ronald and Marie Abrams Volunteer of the Year Award.
In 1951 William married Dorothy Lubofsky, and they had two sons, Dr. Alan Levy M.D. and James Levy. Following her death in 1991, he established the Dorothy Levy Memorial Fund at Adath Jeshurun to bring educational and cultural programming to the community annually.
In 1993 he married Judith Pope.
He was a devoted husband, loving father, and an involved grandfather who enjoyed family gatherings and vacations. He was preceded in death by his parents Rebecca and Victor, and his sister Phyllis Glazer (Martin).
He is survived by his two sons, Dr. Alan Levy M.D. (Tamara) and James Levy; Grandsons, Hudson and Cameron; niece Ann (Howell) Niren; Great-nieces Pamela and Amy Niren; Stepsons, Mark Kohlman (Marla) and Joel Kohlman (LiFong); Stepdaughters, Laura Glass (Daniel) and Tasha Futch (Reggie); Step-grandchildren, Taryn and Kennedy Kohlman; Leo Kohlman; Daniel (Malorie), Liam, and Reilly Glass; Christian, Angela, Taylor and Jordan Futch. All of Judith’s grandchildren were born after William and she were married.
The memorial service for this extraordinary life will be live-streamed at 2 p.m., Thursday, April 1, 2021. https://www.facebook.com/HermanMeyerSon/
The family appreciates memorial donations to the Dorothy Levy Memorial Fund, c/o The Jewish Federation, Attn: Stacy Gordon-Funk, 3600 Dutchmans Lane, 40205, (502) 459-0660; or the charity of your choice.
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