Alice Orenstein Kaplan passed away on Jan. 26 at the age of 94 with family by her side, having repeatedly stated that she was quite ready to join her husband, Sidney, to whom she was married for almost 60 years.
Born in Decatur, Ga., in 1928, she was the only Jew in elementary and high school, yet she remained strictly kosher, travelling by streetcar every week to Sunday School at the Ahavath Achim Synagogue on Washington Street, and later to the old Alliance Jewish Center to be with Jewish friends and especially with Sidney.
She would recall standing under the chupah with Sidney in 1948, only one month after the State of Israel was established, listening to Rabbi Harry H. Epstein draw a comparison between their marriage and the creation of the new Jewish State.
Preceding her were her father and mother, Samuel and Esther Orenstein, and her two brothers Leonard and Marvin Orenstein. She enjoyed a very special “big brother, little sister” relationship with Marvin, and both families always celebrated together High Holidays, Passover seders, and family events.
She affectionately remembered Thanksgivings of old when the two families would always come together for lunch at the old Progressive Club, followed by the traditional Thanksgiving Day “Tech vs. Georgia Freshman Football Game.”
Alice was the consummate mother and homemaker, devoting every minute of her early years to raising her children, Scott, Randy, Mark, and Terri. Later, she adored her children-in-law, Shelley, Paul, Karen, and Jack. Her pride and joy were her grandchildren, Shira (David), Dori (Mark), Laura (Eli), Jeffrey, Kristin (Alex), Cody, and, of course, her great-grandchildren, Sydney, Hailey, Harper, and Aliyah.
She loved spending time with all children, and after she raised her own, she became a teacher’s-aid at the Ahavath Achim Synagogue Early Childhood Program for many years. A week did not pass without a former student recognizing and reconnecting with her.
Among her chief joys in life were her weekly card games (actually reported in the Atlanta newspapers) with her lifelong friends, Shirley Tenenbaum, Barbara Bock, Margie Greenberg, Betty Goldstein, Florence Gillman, and Augusta Cohen which took place consistently for almost 70 years.
Together with husband, Sidney, she emersed herself in AA Synagogue affairs, volunteering at countless events, serving as a member of several committees, and as an officer of the sisterhood.
She loved dancing and performed in several musical productions at the synagogue, as well as the old Mayfair Club of Atlanta.
Alice was an early advocate of Jewish Day School education and Jewish summer camps. She and Sidney were among the very first in our community to send each of their children to the Hebrew Academy of Atlanta (now the Atlanta Jewish Academy) and Camp Ramah in the Berkshires.
She insisted upon a strict rule that wherever you were and whatever you were doing, you came home to be with family for Rosh Hashanah and Passover seders.
With Sidney by her side, Alice was blessed to enjoy a full, joyous life, traveling with family and friends to more places than she could recall. She was known for her elegant, creative, and contemporary sense of style.
The family is grateful to Alice’s care providers, Zee, Stephanie, Susan, Jane, and Melissa, who provided loving and compassionate care during her final years.
May the memory of Alice Kaplan be a blessing to all who were honored to know and love her. A graveside service was held at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 29, 2023, at Greenwood Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the charity of one’s choice. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, 770-451-4999.
- Alice Orenstein Kaplan
- Ahavath Achim Synagogue
- Alliance Jewish Center
- Rabbi Harry H. Epstein
- High Holidays
- Passover seders
- Progressive Club
- Tech vs. Georgia Freshman Football Game
- Mayfair Club of Atlanta
- Hebrew Academy
- atlanta jewish academy
- Camp Ramah
- Greenwood Cemetery
- Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care