|Birth: ||Dec. 16, 1915|
New York County (Manhattan)
New York, USA
|Death: ||Mar. 20, 2010|
Palm Beach County
The following are recollections unique to my father:
Camping in the Wilton town forest. Dad was a city boy but he indulged my love of the outdoors.
Buying my first bicycle, a Schwinn Typhoon, at Boyd's in Wilton, CT. To this day a bicycle is my preferred mode of transportation and recreation.
Taking me to the Bronx zoo where I held my first Burmese python. So began a life long love of zoology but especially all things reptilian.
Introducing me to stamp collecting. I'm a active Philatelist and life member of the American Philatelic Society.
Teaching me about fountain pens, their nibs, elegance of design, form and function. My collection is modest, but impressive. And yes, I do use them!
Exposing me to art. He bought me a jigsaw puzzle of Hieronymus Bosch's "Garden of Earthly Delights". It so impressed me that years later I would graduate with a bachelors degree in art history.
Many people, when they first meet my dad, assume that he came from wealth and privilege. His clear, articulate speech. His vast, worldly knowledge. His solid appreciation of the liberal arts. All of these things belie his true background and up-bringing. In fact, my father was the product of immigrant parents who, after emigrating from Austria and entering America through Ellis Island, settled in lower Manhattan and later in Brooklyn where Dad spent his formative years. They offered him very little except the opportunity to grow up in America.
My dad was the baby with two older bothers (Murray and Charlie) and one older sister, Elsie. Despite this fact, my dad was the first member of his family to ever graduate high school.
My father was many things to different people. Father, husband, brother, son, grandfather. To me, however, he was a teacher, mentor, role model and a larger than life figure whose life time achievements I can never hope to mirror. To come from so little and to leave so much is truly an extraordinary accomplishment. He was the product of two world wars and an international depression that lasted almost ten years. He was raised and schooled by people who came of age in the 19th century. All of this provided a foundation upon which he build a successful career in the military, in the law, and on Wall street.
I am forever grateful to my father for all of the opportunities he provided. Private schools, trips to Europe to study art history and language and his endless lessons in how to build, maintain and protect ones' assets. He taught me the art of diplomacy and the skills necessary to speak comfortably with pretty much anyone, whether a cabbie in New York or the curator of a rare book library in Philadelphia.
Ninety four years is a good run, by most standards, and Dad suffered terribly in the last few months. Physically with his cancer and emotionally after the loss of his Joannie, my mom, last August. While I'm glad he is now at peace I will forever miss his friendship and guidance.
From his official obituary:
Commander M. Philip Lorber, an international lawyer, died at his home in Boca Raton, Florida on March 20, 2010. He was 94 years old.
In 1953, he tried the Auschwitz slave labor case against the German chemical company, I.G. Farben. The plaintiff, Rudolph Waxman, once a slave laborer, became a soldier in the U.S.Army after being liberated by the Russian army in 1945 and emigrating to the United States with the assistance of his uncle, the award winning arranger and composer, Franz Waxman. Private Waxman was then sent back to Germany by the U.S. Army to serve as a military policeman. As a member of the allied forces, he qualified to use the occupation courts where Lorber successfully represented him, pleading his case in The U.S. Court of the Allied High Commission for Germany and winning for him a substantial settlement.
Commander Lorber served in the U.S. Navy during WWII and was released to inactive duty in 1946. He was then appointed Chief Attorney and Reviewer and legal adviser to the Commanding General in Heidelberg, Germany for three years. Following this position, he was licensed by General Lucius Clay, military governor of Germany, to engage in the private practice of law which consisted of civil and criminal law and courts martial.
He remained in Germany for 17 years where he and his law school classmate, Henry G. Vogel, maintained offices as Lorber-Vogel in Heidelberg, Frankfurt and Paris. During this period he was Commanding Officer of a Naval Reserve Unit for 8 years, engaging in weekly drills and periodic active duty for training with the Rhine River Patrol, the Judge Advocate General's office in Washington DC and aboard the USS Intrepid with the 6th Mediterranean Fleet. He also served as Vice President of the Association of American Lawyers in Europe 1961-62.
In 1952 he married the former Joan Hecht of Baltimore, MD who predeceased him in August, 2009. She was a survivor of the torpedoed passenger liner S.S. Athenia.
He returned to the U.S. in 1963 with his wife and children, settling in Westport, CT and lived at 4 Larch Tree Lane for over 20 years. He was a member of the Connecticut and New York Bar with offices in Norwalk, CT. In 1977, he was elected to a 4 year term on the Westport Zoning Board of Appeals. He was appointed as a Commissioner on the Commission of Human Rights in 1979 by Governor Ella Grasso and continued service under Gov. William O'Neill. Also in 1979, he was appointed by Governor Grasso as Chairman of a select Fact Finding Commission with a mandate to hold public hearings throughout Connecticut, "to investigate incidences of cross burnings and vandalism motivated by racial and religious prejudice." The resulting report lead to increased penalties for such offenses.
He was partner and General Counsel in the New York City security firm Vogel-Lorber and General Counsel to the Put and Call Brokers and Dealers Association, a subject upon which he published and lectured.
In 1972, he was co-counsel for Clifford Irving and personal counsel for Edith Irving during the internationally covered "Hoax Trial" which involved the writing of a fraudulent biography of Howard Hughes by Clifford Irving. This story was recently made into the 2006 movie "The Hoax" starring Richard Gere.
In 1980 he served on the campaign staff of Sen. Christopher Dodd in his first term election to the U.S. Senate.
He served on the Board of Directors of the South Palm Beach County Military Officers Association of America.
In 2002, following the death of Henry Vogel, his law school classmate, fellow Naval officer and law partner of almost 40 years, he established the "Henry G. Vogel '39 and M. Philip Lorber '39 Scholarship Fund" which supports academically qualified students in need of financial assistance at St. John's Law School. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to this scholarship fund at St. John's Law School, 800 Utopia Parkway, Queens, NY 11439.
The son of immigrant parents, he was truly self-made and the first member of his family to graduate high school. His career embraced the private practice of law, military service, government service and Wall Street.
He leaves his daughter, Beth Lorber of Port Townsend, WA, his son, Bryan Lorber of Barrington, RI, and three grandchildren, Jora Rehm-Lorber of Fort Collins, CO, and Benjamin and Carolyn Lorber, both of Barrington, RI. He was predeceased by two brothers, Murray and Charlie and a sister, Elsie Wohl.
Max Lorber (1877 - 1962)
Bertha Mandel Lorber (1879 - 1951)
Joan Hecht Lorber (1928 - 2009)
Arlington National Cemetery
Plot: Section 64 Plot 6061
Created by: grayslate
Record added: Jul 25, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 55412871