Jacob Arvey Dead at 81

Funeral and burial services were held Friday for Jacob M. Arvey, a democrat Party leader in Chicago for many decades and widely active in Jewish affairs, who died of heart failure last Thursday at the age of 81.

The son of poor Russian Jewish Parents, he grew up on Chicago’s West Side and engaged in politics during the day while working his way through law school at night. From 1946 to 1953 he was considered the undisputed Democratic leader of Chicago.

Arvey was a member of the board of Brandeis University, the National Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs, Mount Sinai Hospital of Miami and the Jewish Home for the Aged in Chicago and Miami. He was active in the American Friends of Hebrew University, Tel Aviv University, the Joint Distribution Committee, B’nai B’rith, the United Jewish Appeal, the Jewish National Fund, the National Jewish Hospital of Denver, the American ORT Federation, the American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science.

Among his many honors were the United States Legion of Merit, Man of the Year of the JNF of Chicago in 1957 and the Israel Bond Organization Man of the Century in 1964, He was assistant State Attorney of Cook County, Master of Chancery in Circuit Court of Cook County, and Democratic national committeeman from Illinois. He won the rank of Colonel in World War II.

Arvey had served as special gifts chairman for the Combined Jewish Appeal, predecessor to the Jewish United Fund. He had also been a board member of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. Marvin N. Stone, president of both agencies, and James P. Rice, executive vice president of the two agencies, issued a statement declaring that “we of the Jewish community of Chicago recall his memory and his shared concern with deep affection and great respect.”

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