Samuel Mellitz Dead at 91

Funeral services were held today for Judge Samuel Mellitz, a distinguished jurist and prominent communal leader in Connecticut and an active member of the Board of Trustees of Yeshiva University in New York City for more than 40 years. He died last Sunday in Yale-New Haven Hospital at the age of 91. The late Dr. Samuel Belkin, who was president of Yeshiva University, once described Mellitz as “an image of survival of Judaism in this country.”

Born in Bridgeport, Conn., Mellitz was educated in the city’s public schools and, in 1911, earned his law degree from Yale University. From 1912 to 1935 he practiced law privately and in 1936 he was appointed to the bench by the then Governor Wilbur Cross. The jurist served on the Court of Common Pleas and was appointed to the State Supreme Court of Errors, the state’s highest judicial body. In 1963 he retired as associate justice.

In addition to his activity in community organizations, Mellitz was also state chairman for Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine, a vice president of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America and president of Congregation Ahavat Achim in Fairfield.

He was also the first president both of the Bridgeport Jewish Community Center and that city’s Jewish Community Council, and was a member of the Zionist Organization of America, Mizrachi, the American Jewish Congress and B’nai B’rith. Mellitz was also a member of professional, fraternal and philanthropic societies.

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