Ralph Hirsch has marked the lives of thousands of children and adults during his 92 years. He was born in Brooklyn and raised in Brighton Beach. Ralph attended Lincoln High School and Brooklyn College, excelled in sports, and captained the varsity basketball team. He loved music and played the trumpet, joining the Musicians’ Union as a teenager to perform at weddings and bar mitzvahs. His music career was cut short when he realized he didn’t like working evenings. However, he recognized the importance of a musical education and later in life was a generous supporter of music and the arts for children. The Korean War interrupted Ralph’s education. He served in the army special forces in Japan from 1952 to 1953. After his discharge, he returned to school and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in health education. After graduation, Ralph began a long career working with children as a teacher, school administrator and camp director. He was the owner and director of summer camps for children, including Camp LoKanda. Ralph married his wife Ellen in 1982. Ralph retired in 1989, and he and Ellen moved to Scottsdale, AZ. He has occupied his spare time with tennis, gardening, acting, and supporting Arizona’s professional sports teams. He and Ellen loved to travel and bought a second home in Marbella, Spain, where for 18 years they escaped the Arizona summer heat and toured extensively across Europe. They also loved the cruise life, which allowed them to see the rest of the world. Ralph was an excellent organizer and had exceptional leadership skills. He served as president of his homeowners associations and led many social groups. His friends remember all the wonderful theme parties he and Ellen threw, complete with poetry, games, prizes and jokes. Ralph was predeceased by his parents Leo and Clara Hirsch, and his brother Phil. He is survived by his loving wife Ellen, his daughter Lori (Marc) Zaintz, his daughter Suzie Hirsch, his grandson Zak Zaintz, his granddaughter Anastasia Zaintz, his nephew Lee Hirsch, his niece Hope Honeyman and many, many friends who considered Ralph part of their family. Donations in Ralph’s memory may be made to the Sagewood Residents Foundation, which provides college scholarships to employees and their dependents. The address is Box 5310, 4555 E. Mayo Blvd., Phoenix, AZ 85050.
Posted on September 28, 2022
Posted in The Arizona Republic