February 19, 2021


Harry L. Rothstein died unexpectedly and peacefully at Highland Park Senior Living on Feb. 19, 2021 in  Wilkes-Barre, PA at the age of 98 – 6 weeks shy of his 99th birthday.  

Harry outlived virtually his entire family and most of his many friends of the same generation. Above all else, Harry loved and adored his family. He married his beloved wife, Arlene, on August 31, 1944 and they were  married for 74 years. He has missed her terribly and he joins her today.  

He is survived by his son Robert and his wife Anne of Brussels, Belgium, his daughter Robin and her husband  Robert Weisberger – of East Hanover, NJ, grand-daughters Shona (husband Pierre) and Liane (husband Jeromy) Hrabovecky -originally from Hazleton, PA, both of Brussels, Belgium. Harry is also survived by his nieces Jane Rothstein and Marjorie (Warren) of NY and Florida, Ellen (Weiner), Judy (Kramer), and his nephew Laz Rothstein, all of Florida, and all their offspring. He is also survived by his great-grand-son, Archie (Shona’s son)  whom he got to meet a year ago. Harry was preceded in death by his wife Arlene, parents Sadie Eisenberg Rothstein and Lazarus Rothstein and brothers Robert and Joseph.  

Harry was born on April 22, 1922 in Wilkes-Barre, PA to Lazarus and Sadie Rothstein. He graduated from Myers High School and attended the Valley Forge Military Academy. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business in 1943.  

He was an avid Eagle Scout and represented his country at the Fifth Boy Scout Jamboree in Holland in 1937, which was a highlight of his young life.  

During World War II, he enlisted in the Army Air Force and went to Officers Training School where he trained to  become a radio operator. He received his commission in August of 1944, one day before his wedding. He would have preferred to fly but could not qualify because he was color blind.  

Harry and his family owned and operated a wholesale grocery business in Wilkes-Barre, after which he owned and operated a trucking and storage business in Wilkes-Barre for many years until the flood in 1972, at which point he moved his business to Scranton.  

He retired from the warehouse and trucking business at 65 and went on to work in the Commercial Real Estate industry for 20 years.  

Harry and Arlene were active in the Wilkes-Barre Little Theater, the JCC Drama Guild, and the Rotary Club  Student Exchange program. They hosted several foreign exchange students in their home from Austria, New  Zealand, Sweden, Mexico, and Brazil.  

Harry was extremely accomplished at making jokes and puns, and often was hired by various local organizations  to be a master of ceremonies at their events. He was a tease and jokester until the end, and his sense of humor  never diminished. He could still recite “Gunga Din” in its entirety and recited many other poems at a moment’s  notice. He had a bit of a Henny Youngman comedy style in his insults – but if he insulted you, you knew he really loved you. He wasn’t much for being politically correct. He was generous to a fault, and never  complained about anything. The family would like to thank all the caregivers at Highland Park Senior Living

A graveside funeral service on Tuesday, February 23, 2021, at 12:30 pm in Temple Israel Cemetery, Swoyersville. Rabbi Larry Kaplan will officiate. To view, go to Facebook, Temple Israel Wilkes-Barre.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the charity of the donors choice.

The family is so grateful to the staff and caregivers at Highland Park Senior Living for their love and care. They made sure his last three years were full of life, laughter, love and friendship.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Rosenberg Funeral Chapel, Inc. Wilkes-Barre

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