A Crafty Retirement
Following a couple of hours of volunteer work for the Recording for the Blind Program in King of Prussia, Jay Furman heads over to the Germantown Jewish Centre, where, as a charter member, he is helping to put together a history of the synagogue. And this is just Monday. At 92, Mr. Furman’s weekly schedule continues to be dominated by social and philanthropic activities.
Jay Furman was raised in Brooklyn and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied engineering. He became a mechanical engineer and operated Claremont Engineering on Delaware Avenue in Philadelphia. He worked with recycling paper pulps and goods and with developing filter systems for processing plants. After retiring in 1986, he began consulting for the Ceco and Clermont company, whom he sold his own business to. Mr. Furman continued consulting work until 1994. Jay and his wife lived in Lafayette Hill for many years and raised three children there. His wife passed away in 1987 from cancer.
After his wife died, Mr. Furman chose to remain in their family home for several years. He began to consider a move to a retirement community because he felt it was the right thing to do. Mr. Furman chose Sterling Glen of Center City, a supportive living residence which offers both independent and assisted living options in Philadelphia, because of the community’s location and amenities. Since the move, Mr. Furman has continued to pursue his cultural and social interests with the comfort of knowing that his meals will always be prepared and any assistance he may need in the future will be provided. Of the community, Mr. Furman says, “This is the right place for me at this age.”
Mr. Furman remains very active and keeps his car, which he uses daily, parked in the community garage. In addition to his work with Recording for the Blind and his synagogue, Mr. Furman volunteers at the Curator’s Office at the Franklin Institute, plays bridge several days a week, and attends sculpting classes. He has been doing woodworking for many years and several of his beautiful pieces are displayed in the main lobby at Sterling Glen.
Quite the Renaissance man, Mr. Furman also leads a folk dancing class for his fellow residents. For the residents in wheelchairs, he teaches square dance moves that they can do while seated. Mr. Furman also enjoys Shabbat dinners and trips to the opera with his lady friend, who lives in a nearby apartment. Mr. Furman was recently honored by the Germantown Jewish Centre as a vice chair of the original Construction Committee of the synagogue. Both he and his brother were original charter members.
With such a busy schedule, Mr. Furman is happy to be comfortable settled in at Sterling Glen-where he knows he will always come home to a hot meal and friendly faces.