Lionel Sharpe of the Australian Jewish Genealogy Society (Victoria) just informed me of the passing of Les Oberman, 10-year president of the society. He died early January 21, just a few days before his 82nd birthday, after suffering a heart attack 10 days ago.
We saw Les and Sonya on almost every trip they made to Israel, as well as meeting up with them at IAJGS conferences. I interviewed Les and wrote about his research and roots trips to Eastern Europe.
I had last heard from Les on December 13, concerning next year's Australian Jewish Genealogy Conference.
Les worked without fatigue on so many projects and on his own family history. Those much younger than he became exhausted just listening to him relate his non-stop activities and roots travel.
With roots in Ukraine, Romania and Poland - his father was born in Ottoman Palestine - he kept looking for the town of origin (eventually discovered to be Bogopol, Ukraine), and even sent letters to hundreds of Oberman families around the world. He visited Bogopol on his second visit to Eastern Europe, after learning that his ancestor, Israel Oberman AKA Srul Guberman, was from there.
Rosh Pina, an early settlement in Israel, was founded by some of his ancestors, and he visited often.
Les created two websites detailing his research. For now, Oberman.org and Bucshester.org remain online. Do visit them.
I extend my personal condolences to Sonya and the rest of the family on the loss. Jewish genealogy has lost a very good friend, as have I.