Florence Gersuk Lipsky, a pillar of strength in the Washington Jewish community, resident of Leisure World in Silver Spring, died on Jan. 2 at age 92. She is survived by her loving family, daughters Jan and husband Ronald Parks, Judy, and Barbara (Bobbie), son Robert and wife Susan, six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
Florence and her husband Irving were founding members of the Shaare Tefila Congregation on Riggs Rd. in Washington. For more than 50 years they helped Shaare Tefila thrive in Silver Spring, where it moved to — Irving as congregation president and Florence as Sisterhood President and board member, Hebrew school administrator/principal for five years and singing with her beautiful voice in many Shaare Tefila entertainment shows and at community Israel Bonds functions. As a representative of the Jewish War Veterans Ladies Auxiliary, for 65 years she regularly visited the Veterans Hospital in D.C. providing comfort to ailing veterans. For 25 years she served as a volunteer at the Washington Adventist Hospital serving as patient advocate and offering comforting chaplain type services to patients and their families.
Florence was on the Board of the local JNF, a life member of the UJA, Israel Bonds Chairman for 40 years and charter member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. She was instrumental in the local Shalom Holocaust survivor organization, providing the stimulus to the Holocaust survivor founding members to open up and discuss their painful experiences so their families and the community would know the details of what happened to them. She served as chairman of the Eastern Seaboard Soviet Union Vigil effort to free Jewish prisoners suffering under Soviet anti-Semitic repression. For 15 years, Florence and her husband conducted the very important Washington area Lifeline Program as volunteers. She continued her Shaare Tefila volunteer service efforts even as she was in her late illness stage, managing Shaare Tefila’s weekly Sabbath Kiddush staffing arrangements