Richard “Ricky” Parasol has passed away

It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of Richard “Ricky” Parasol, friend and Distinguished Benefactor of POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews.

Born in Czestochowa in 1935, Richard was an engineer, entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist.

He was an only child within the Jewish middle-class Parasol family. His earliest years were wrought with the terror and loss surrounding the Holocaust. In 1941, at age six, his family was forced by the Nazis from their home and “relocated” to the city’s Jewish ghetto. At age eight, Richard became a “Hidden Child” and it would be the last time he would see his parents alive. Under the care of a Polish Catholic family, Richard hid until the war’s end in 1945. By adolescence, he had witnessed and endured enormous personal tragedy, yet he was affixed to survive and move forward. Astray without family or resources, Richard began the arduous journey as an orphan-refugee that would lead him out of Poland, through continental Europe and into Israel.

In 1948 Richard was successfully able to enter Israel and began his life studying and working in kibbutz Ein Harod. Kibbutz life helped to support the young orphan carve a future out for himself.

After a mandatory service in the IDF during the Suez Crisis of 1956 Richard was able to immigrate to the US to study mechanical engineering at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly). After graduating, he worked as an engineer for several years, and in 1964 left and used his hard earned savings to start buying and selling apartments in San Francisco. He was successful both in his professional and private life.

Richard’s energy, kindness, and drive were both infectious and motivating. He will be greatly missed.

We extend our deepest sympathies to Ruth and Richard’s loved ones.

Board and Team of the Association of the Jewish Historical Institute of Poland