Home March 2022 She Inspired Gentleness and Kindness

She Inspired Gentleness and Kindness

Edith Ruth Falkenstein, born in Anaheim in 1912, was the daughter of German Jewish immigrants William Falkenstein and Regina Harris Falkenstein. Her father owned Falkenstein’s department store and was an active civic leader in the early Anaheim community, and her brother Stanley became an architect who designed the city’s Ebell Clubhouse and later became a set designer for Twentieth Century Fox Studios. After graduating from college in 1936, Edith began working at the Anaheim Public Library and was employed there for her entire career, retiring in 1979. At 43 years of service, she had the longest tenure in Anaheim’s history. She also accumulated over 25 years as a volunteer. According to her obituary, “She inspired gentleness and kindness in almost all who knew her, and never compromised on her core values, which centered around family and community. Edith will be missed by all of us.” She passed away quietly in her sleep in 2005, at age 93, and her headstone aptly states that she lived a “A life spent in public service.” Tikkun Olam indeed.

Dalia Taft, archivist of the Orange County Jewish Historical Society, highlights images from the archives every month. For more information, please visit www.jewishoc.org/history. You can also contact Dalia at daliat@jccoc.org or at (949) 435-3400, ext. 360. The Orange County Jewish Historical Society is a program of the Merage Jewish Community Center and is fully funded by the Jewish Community Foundation Orange County.

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