Harold Martin Hirshman, 91, of East Brunswick, previously of North Brunswick and Philadelphia, died peacefully on April 25, 2022 at Parker Nursing Home at River Road in Piscataway.
Born in 1931 at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Philadelphia to Harry and Hanna Hirshman, Harold, along with his brothers Ellis and Spencer, attended Philadelphia schools and graduated from Northeast High School at age 17.
He was a proud alumnus of Rutgers University-Camden, which was known as the College of South Jersey when he first enrolled in 1948. He served as president of the Student Council and captain of the baseball team, on which he played shortstop.
After graduation from Rutgers in 1952, he enlisted in the United States Navy, attended Officer Candidate School and was commissioned as an Ensign. He remained in active military service until 1957 and thereafter served for over 20 years in the Naval Reserve, where he attained the Rank of Commander.
It was on a shore leave during his Navy service that he met his future wife, Edna May Levine, who was working as an elevator operator in the Sagamore Hotel in Miami Beach where her parents, Abraham and Claire Levine, operated a candy store. Harold and Edna May were loving and devoted partners in marriage for over 65 years.
After Harold and Edna May married in1956, they moved to Philadelphia where she continued her studies and received her Bachelor of Science degree. When Harold left active military service in 1957, he became the Registrar at Rutgers University-Camden. In 1962, he was appointed as Associate University Registrar and moved with his family to Central Jersey. Harold was thereafter appointed University Registrar and eventually served as Associate VIce- President of Student Services until 1991. In that position, he oversaw the entirety of Rutgers University’s admissions, financial aid, course registration and grading and commencement operations. He loved serving the students of the University and shared in the pride of their families.
Harold and Edna May bought a small home in Spray Beach on Long Beach Island in 1974 and generously and lovingly hosted friends and family there each summer for over 40 years. He was affectionately known by his neighbors there as the “Mayor of 21st Street.” He spent many happy times there and indulged his love for sports, watching his beloved Phillies and Eagles on many an afternoon and evening.
Harold was uniformly respected as a fair, generous and playful person who loved his wife Edna May, his children Michele (Russell Pearce), Elliot (Jeri), Ken (Susan), his grandchildren Seth Pearce (Ann Cheng), Wendy Lewis (Devin), Nathan Hirshman (Rachel), Jacob Pearce (Opal Ong), and Matthew, Scott and Annie Hirshman and great-grandchildren Gray Lewis and Raphael and Lev Cheng-Pearce. He also cherished his brother Spencer and sister-in-law Joanruth of Boynton Beach, Florida and his nieces and nephews Barbara, Elena Jill, Robert and Phillip. He was pre-deceased by his brother Ellis and sister-in-law Betty.
Contributions in Harold’s memory may be made to Elijah’s Promise in New Brunswick, Habitat for Humanity Philadelphia and Meals-on-Wheels New Brunswick.
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