Press, Samuel

Press, Rabbi Dr. Samuel B.

PRESS, Rabbi Dr. Samuel B., age 87, of Dayton, passed away Monday, April 29, 2024. Rabbi Press was born in Middleton, CT in 1936 and raised in Springfield, MA. He graduated from Yeshiva College with honors and received the Talmud Prize. After college, Rabbi Press served in the U.S. Air Force and was the Alaska Command Jewish Chaplain of Alaska serving the U.S. Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard and Bureau of Indian Affairs. He was also the Chief Rabbi of Alaska. Rabbi Press was the founding Rabbi of the Oyster Bay Jewish Center Synagogue in New York.

In 1978 Rabbi Press came to Dayton and served 25 years as the senior Rabbi at Beth Abraham Synagogue. He began programs with other faith communities and was president of the first joint synagogue programming with classes, & joint services. During his years, he served on numerous Jewish and community committees including several interfaith and interracial committees. He served the Dayton Jewish Community Center, Community Hebrew School, Hillel Academy, Jewish Family Services and was the founder of the Dayton Synagogue Forum. Rabbi Press was respected as a Jewish Scholar having published several articles. He was published in many magazines and journals, and his writings appeared in the media.

The Honorable Tony P. Hall stated: during Rabbi Press's years in Dayton, he made an enormous difference in the lives of the congregants as well as the citizens of Greater Dayton. His service reached far beyond the synagogue serving as the Director of the Dayton Black-White Coalition, was a member of the Board of Directors of Womanline, Dayton Free Clinic, was a member of the Advisory committee at Good Samaritan Hospital, and the Ethics committee at Miami Valley Hospital.

Rabbi Press is survived by devoted son, Adam M. Press; his beloved and devoted sister, Dr. Rosalyn Avigad; and countless members of his congregation whose lives he touched in so many profound ways.

Funeral service 12 Noon Thursday, May 2, 2024 at Beth Abraham Synagogue, 305 Sugar Camp Circle. Interment Beth Abraham Cemetery. If desired, memorial contributions may be made to the AFMDA (American Friends of Magen David Adom) in his memory. Funeral arrangements entrusted to Marker & Heller Funeral Homes.

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