Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-10-10
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Friends recall connections with Howard Wax
by Matt Simonette
2018-06-06

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Attorney and River Forest resident Howard Wax, who passed away in May, was remembered by close friend Lee Griesbach, among others, as someone who "collected friends" in the best sense of the phrase.

"He was a networker," added Griesbach's partner, David Miller.

Wax took his own life on May 12. He is survived by his husband, Robert Pooley, and two children, Sarah and Marcus Wax.

A native of Livingston, New Jersey, but a longtime Chicago-area resident, Wax had roles in a number of community organizations, and was for many years co-president of the mainly-LGBT synagogue Congregation Or Chadash. After he and his family moved to River Forest, Wax was also an active member at Oak Park Temple.

Rabbi Larry Edwards recalled that Wax was "very involved in his community—the children's school, the synagogue, the tennis club. One of many words that come to mind about him is 'generous.' Howard devoted time and resources, both financial and intellectual, to the community —the Jewish community, the LGBTQ community, pro-bono legal work and beyond."

Wax's friends' remembrances nearly all included a common theme: his knack for connecting people with one another. Close friend Mark Maroney said, "Whenever I met an individual or couple I thought would make a good connection with Howard and Rob, almost invariably it turned out they already knew one another, often through connections Howard had previously made."

Edwards added that Wax was "a friendly face and warm presence" at Or Chadash, noting that "numbers of people have told me that Howard was among the first to greet them and make them feel at home when they showed up for the first time. He was in fact the first person to invite me to attend a service at Or Chadash, where I later served as rabbi for 10 years."

"There was always two degrees of separation," said Griesbach. "You'd meet someone and somehow there'd be a connection to Howard, no matter who you spoke to or who you knew. He not only collected friends, but he connected them. He knew everyone's name and remembered everyone. It was amazing how he could do that."

Wax was an avid runner and took part in marathons and other races, and indeed met Pooley when both were members of Frontrunners/Frontwalkers Chicago. According to Griesbach, Wax was also an avid movie buff, loved musical theater, and was active in his tennis club, which was just as much a social group as it was a sports one.

"He liked to grow organizations and networks of people," said Miller.

Susan Boone, who is married to Edwards, explained why she stayed on "the opposite side any circle" Wax was in when he ventured out on the dance floor.

"He was also full of fun … He was prone to let loose unrestrainedly," Boone said. "He could do the Russian squat dance with flair. At Jewish events where people danced the hora, I observed on multiple occasions that individuals in his vicinity, and he himself, often lifted completely off the ground—they looked like characters in a Chagall painting, flying."

Maroney also noted Wax's devotion to his family, recalling, "Home life was important to Howard. He may have been the 'stay-at-home' dad, but he also helped make sure his family ventured out and experienced the world together, and with a wide circle of friends and extended family.

"I'll always remember the pride and admiration I felt years ago, seeing the photo of Howard and Rob—two gay dads—with their two small children, as part of a cover story in Chicago Parent magazine."

Besides being a stay-at-home father, Wax worked part-time at the Brown Elephant in Oak Park and did legal work for the Pro Bono Network.

"He was representing people who had come to this country, in a lot of cases, to escape some type of abuse," said Griesbach.

Miller mentioned that, when he was at Wax's shiva, a number of people credited Wax with introducing them to their life-partners. "Howard liked to match up couples and would hold dinner parties, ostensibly 'just to hold a dinner party,' that were really to set people up," he said.

Griesbach added, "It was pretty amazing how broad his reach was in touching people's lives."

In addition to Pooley and his children, Wax is survived by his sisters Rabbi Pamela ( Chaim Bronstein ) Wax and Sheila ( Willy ) Chang. Funeral services were held May 30 at Oak Park Temple. Wax's family has requested donations in his memory for either the Oak Park Temple Chevra Kaddisha ( burial society ) or the Pro Bono Network.

Also see

www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Authorities-searching-for-missing-suburban-man/62860.html .

and

www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Body-of-missing-River-Forest-man-located/62987.html .


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Matthew Shepard to be Interred at Washington National Cathedral 2018-10-11 - WASHINGTON —Matthew Shepard, who was murdered at 21 years old in 1998 in an anti-gay hate crime, will be interred at Washington National ...


Gay News

Gursch memorial set for Oct. 20 2018-10-10 - A memorial gathering for Arthur Gursch, who died June 22, will be held Saturday, Oct. 20, 1-4 p.m., at Grace Place, 637 S. ...


Gay News

IN THE LIFE Lizzy Wolferman 2018-09-27 - Everyone's life is a journey. However, with Liz Wolferman—the front-of-house manager of the acclaimed local restaurant Mott St.—it's been a literal journey that's ...


Gay News

Grant celebration of life Oct. 2 2018-09-26 - A celebration of life for Harry Hodges, aka entertainer Ginger Grant, will take place Tuesday, Oct. 2, at the Baton Show Lounge, 436 ...


Gay News

NUNN ON ONE Adam Rippon skates into success 2018-09-26 - Figure skater Adam Rippon won a bronze medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics, making history by becoming the first openly gay U.S. athlete ...


Gay News

Bernard Brommel passes away at 88 2018-09-26 - Bernard Brommel, a retired Northeastern Illinois University ( NEIU ) professor, therapist and philanthropist, passed away Sept. 22 at his home in Kalamazoo, ...


Gay News

Slain trans woman's mother reflects on daughter's life, passing 2018-09-19 - Valerie Griffin will always remember her late daughter—Dejanay Stanton, who went by the nickname Dada—as a free spirit who loved to both travel ...


Gay News

Chicagoan raises money and pride walking to fight HIV/AIDS 2018-09-19 - Christopher Pazdernik was filled with fear and shame that day in 2009 when he learned he is HIV-positive. "I was so embarrassed and ...


Gay News

DeRay Mckesson, fighting for Black lives 2018-09-19 - By the time this interview was conducted Sept. 7, DeRay Mckesson, one of the most visible Black Lives Movement organizers, was already on ...


Gay News

The Baton Show Lounge's Ginger Grant remembered 2018-09-17 - Entertainer Harry Hodges, a.k.a. Ginger Grant, passed away the week of Sept. 10 in Chicago. Hodges, performing under Grant's persona, was a longtime ...


 



Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.