Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

Dewey Stone Dead at 77

November 22, 1977
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Funeral services will be held tomorrow for Dewey D. Stone, who served for more than a quarter of a century as chairman of the Board of Governors of the Weizmann Institute of Science and its American Committee, both of which he helped to found. He died here last Saturday at the age of 77, after a long illness.

A prominent industrialist and national Jewish communal leader, Stone at the time of his death had completed nearly 60 years of dedicated service to the Jewish people and Israel. Born in Brockton, one of nine children of immigrant parents, Stone was educated in the public schools of that city, and the School of Business Administration of Boston University.

An intimate of Dr. Chaim Weizmann, Israel’s first President, he played a key leadership role in the establishment of the State, both as a dedicated Zionist, philanthropist, and as a leader in the campaigns that marked American Jewry’s greatest mobilization of funds for the survival of Jewish victims of Nazism, and for Israel’s needs. In this connection, he served as chairman of a number of key campaigns conducted by the United Israel Appeal and the United Jewish Appeal, and helped found the Israel Bond Organization.


Stone also headed the operation in the United States to acquire boats, among them the famed “Exodus,” to bring survivors of the Holocaust into Palestine, despite the British ban against Jewish immigration. He also served as a member of a small, secret group charged with the acquisition of military equipment imperatively needed by the small defense forces of the Jewish settlements in Palestine–the Haganah.

During the 1947-48 United Nations debates, he played a significant role in helping to secure key votes approving the UN partition Resolution, and, after the Resolution’s passage, in clearing obstacles for Weizmann, enabling him to secure President Truman’s pledge of recognition of Jewish Statehood.

In the course of his long career of public service, Stone played a key role, as a fundraiser and in mobilizing Jewish communal support, in the making of two Presidents of the United States, Harry S. Truman and John F. Kennedy. Among his many communal activities, Stone was also a member of the Board of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

William M. Landau, president of the JTA, said today: “Dewey Stone was deeply and passionately involved in the cause of the Jewish people and of the State of Israel. His activities, insights and contributions will be missed by all.”

Recommended from JTA