Seymour Garfinkel, 83
July 19, 2012,
Garfinkel started with Ellery in 1953 in sales and eventually went on to buy the company in 1981. After a 47-year career in the window curtain business, he retired in 1997.
He was one of a generation of legendary figures in the window business, along with the Kahn, Lichtenberg, Hornick and other families, that were closely identified with their companies.
In a 1986 profile in Home Textiles Today, he was quoted as saying, "As I see it, ideas of fashion are shared by more people in more places."
He said that the U.S. is a new country in terms of fashion, and change in the way Americans live is responsible in large part for the change in mass retailing. He said: "They like good things, they like colors and they don't like drabness."
Ellery Homestyles today is owned by Budd Goldman. Garfinkel's son, Bruce Garfinkel, is president of the firm, which has expanded into bedding and other home textiles categories.
Bruce Garfinkel, in speaking about his father, said, "He was never one to promote himself. He just liked to be the person he was."
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Rhoda, and besides Bruce and his wife Sandi, a daughter Bonnie Miller and her husband Mark and five grandchildren. Another daughter, Robin, passed away in 1976.
The family is requesting that donations can be made to the Jeri-Finesilver Cancer Foundation and sent to Margie Horowitz, 236 Hamlet Drive, Jericho, NY 11753.
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