SAMUEL HAROLD SINGER, a former hardware store proprietor who was known by friends and family by his middle name of Harold, became a blessed memory on January 15, 2020. He was 96 years old.
A New Orleans native, Singer spent a great deal of his young life living in the house behind E. Singer & Son, his father’s Uptown hardware store. He attended Fortier High School just a few blocks away on Freret Street and graduated from there before enlisting in the U.S. Army Air Corps.
Although he was ever-present at the hardware store and learned how to successfully manage it, Singer was also passionate about flying and had already taken flying lessons when he was only 14 at an airport at the site of the present-day Elmwood Shopping Center.
When he enlisted in 1944, he became a 2nd Lieutenant in the U. S. Army Air Forces Southeast Flying Training Command based in Harlingen, TX, where he was stationed until the end of WWII. Singer’s primary duty was to man a B-26 Maurader and tow targets in order to train young gunnery recruits how to shoot at enemy planes. Singer always said it was a pretty scary job, considering that the students were hardly proficient or accurate.
Following the war’s end, Singer landed on solid ground and returned to his hometown to become the new proprietor of the old hardware store. While he still maintained his love for aeronautics, Singer gave up flying for good when he married the love of his life, Goldie (née Breen), keeping his feet firmly on the ground and celebrating 74 years as a couple last November.
Following his sale of the hardware store to two fellow local members of the Jewish community, Singer was involved in real estate transactions at the Whitney Apartments and oversaw their eventual change into condominiums. Singer was also responsible for the Jewish Burial Rights Cemetery, adjacent to the (Old) Beth Israel Cemetery
He is survived by his wife Goldie, his two children Ronald Singer (Donna), and Lisa Singer Sanders (Rob); five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
A graveside funeral will be held at Jewish Burial Rights Cemetery, 4321 Frenchmen St., on Sunday, January 19, 2020 at 1:30 p.m. Rabbi David Gerber will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Harold’s name to the National World War II Museum or to the charity of your choice.