Nathan Friedman, Brooklyn born and bred, and just shy of his 91st birthday, passed away peacefully after a short illness in Sarasota, FL surrounded by family.
He was born July 9, 1922 and was married to Matilda (Chernotsky) for over 48 years until her death
Nathan and Matilda raised their family in New Jersey. Nate owned a men’s clothing store in Westfield for many years. He had a devoted customer fan base from as far away as Sweden including one who wrote an article about Nathan and his store for The New York Times. Many customers remained friends for life.
Nathan and Matilda raised their family with a strong sense of social justice, participating in peace and civil rights marches, and a devotion to many causes for peace. Nathan had a deepened empathy for all people. He loved music, from the blues to Pete Seeger, from Ramblin Jack to the Beetles. As a youngster he and his Brooklyn friends were Billie Holliday groupies.
But it was when he and Matilda moved to their little blue house on the stream in Roxbury that his creative juices truly began to flow. Nate was always drawing designs on little scraps of paper, ideas for future art pieces. He began to create sculptures welded together from found objects, many antique farm equipment, salvaged from the local dump. They enhanced this Catskill landscape. His interest in outsider art and children’s art lasted a lifetime. He kept pads of paper and charcoals and paints for all the children when they visited.
He is survived by loving son, Henry Friedman and his wife Susan Carle and their son Joshua of Bethesda, MD, a loving daughter, Heidi Friedman and her husband Eugene Doughtery of Woodstock, and their daughter, Alexandra Doughtery of Brooklyn. Nathan’s grandchildren were the light in his very blue eyes. Many nieces and nephews and friends were also part of Nathan’s strong family circle including Mina Zikel of Sarasota, FL with whom he shared the last 10 years of his life.
A celebration of his life is being planned.
A funeral service was held at 1 p.m. on Sunday, June 23, 2013 at the Hynes Funeral Home, Margaretville. The Rabbi Gerald Friedman officiated.
Committal followed at the B’Nai Israel Cemetery in Fleischmanns.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Roxbury Arts Group, PO Box 93, Roxbury, NY 12474.
Funeral arrangements were entrusted to the Hynes Funeral Home, Margaretville.