Theodore Brandow ז"ל
November 18, 1925-January 28, 2023
Theodore Brandow passed away suddenly in his Camp Hill PA home (formerly of Philadelphia PA) on Jan. 28 at the age of 97. He was the beloved husband of Dr. Selma Brandow (nee Koss); loving father of Jonathan Brandow (Susan Brodkin), Riannon Walsh, and Shanna Brandow; adoring grandfather of Emily Rachael Brandow, Sarah Danielle Carvajal (Alex), and great-granddaughter Evalina. Contributions in his memory may be made to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (https://give.bcrf.org/fundraiser/4063195)
In his book Closer to Saturday Ted described his childhood experiences at home and at the Girard College school for orphan boys. That and other childhood experiences compelled him to seek out and offer love to those around him, inside his family and beyond.
He was proud but not boastful of his time as a machinist’s mate in the Navy during World War II. As soon as he returned from the service in 1945 he married Selma, whom he had known since fifth grade and dated since high school.
Each home he lived in—from the row house in Southwest Philly to his long-term house in Erdenheim and his last apartment in Camp Hill—was flooded with his paintings, sculptures and representing fantasy animals, humorous, historical and cultural characters. His art loved the female body but considered the male body a subject for comedy only. His drawings and sculptures cherished the Jewish people and Israel.
His pride in Jewish life shone through his artwork, but also his community activity. He designed and literally built the first (and still the only) synagogue in Springfield Township for the cluster of Jews who had moved there in the mid-Fifties. After moving to Camp Hill, he designed and supervised a complete renovation of Temple Beth Shalom, the synagogue he attended with his extended family.
He traveled extensively in Israel and performed volunteer work there during the Yom Kippur and first Lebanon wars. In his last years he was saddened by what he perceived as a racist and anti-democratic turn in a second country he loved.
He spent his professional career as an architect creating enjoyable living spaces for tens of thousands of families, from struggling lower middle-class developments and garden apartments to estates that--even in the sixties--ran into the millions. He constantly renovated his own homes and freely offered his help in designing new spaces and giving old ones new life for friends and family.
Design and art were his passions, but family was his love. He doted on his children and grandchildren and was thrilled to live long enough to experience his great-granddaughter Evalina.
May the shekhinah grant him a more complete level of peace in the world to come.