Irving Adatto

Irving Adatto, eulogy by Rabbi Hassan and family.
Irving Adatto – Yisrael ben Rahel Adatto loving husband to Viviane
Father to Steven, to Shelley and Alan Baumgarten, and to Ros and Alan Bornstein.
Grandfather to Rebecca, Miriam, Abi, Marco and Ella

Irving Adatto was born April 30, 1920, the third child born to Rachel and Solomon Adatto. He grew up in the central district of Seattle in the old Sephardic neighborhood going to Sephardic Bikur Holim. He attended Pacific Grade School and Garfield High School.

After high school Irv trained as a barber. He worked for a short time as a barber and then he joined the National Guard and spent 5 years in the army with two years in Australia during World War 2. He had a lot of fond memories of his adventures. Irv was a radio operator in the Army. After Australia he was sent to Fort Sill, in Oklahoma, to train people to use Morse code.

Irv met Vivian, when Vivian went into the flower store which was located next door to the music store she was working in. She placed an order with Irv and Irv put a rose on Vivian’s sweater. Irv wanted to see Vivian more so he bought a radio phonograph console which he paid for in three payments just so he could come back regularly and visit Vivian.

Shortly after they began dating and 6 months later they were engaged and they were married February 11, 1951. They had 3 children Steve, Shelley and Ros.

Irv was only in the flower shop a short time. Perhaps just enough time for fate to allow him to meet Vivian. Because right after Irv went back to his training as a barber. He became a corporate barber. Serving as the barber for Boeing and later for the Seattle Times. He also worked for the State of Washington Licensing Barbers and personally administering the exams throughout the state. Irv also had a real estate license too.

Irv was a wonderful husband. In Vivian’s words: “Life had its ups and downs but it was never dull!” He always made Vivian laugh. He had a quick wit and he was really good with words. He loved language and literature.

Irv was a very proud father and grandfather. Irv, got the best grandfather present ever when Abi his 3rd grand daughter was born on his birthday. He loved his children. He took great care of you. He was a very comforting and competent Dad. He also used to love telling you jokes and singing songs. He would tell great stories and he enjoyed writing stories both in English and in Ladino – his first language.

Irv was a proud member of the Ladineros. The Ladino class meets every Tuesday morning, it was one of these Tuesday morning sessions that I attended when I first arrived in Seattle when I first got to know Irv and Viviane. Irv was a mainstay of the Ladino class for many, many years. He was one of the most knowledgeable members of the class. He took great pleasure in participating in all of the sessions.

Irv also loved the opera, poetry, going to lectures on Israel, politics and going to concerts. My defining image of Irv is his strength. He was such a strong and robust man. With such wonderful physical health and wellbeing almost up until the end of his life. Has anyone ever heard of a man of 96 jumping!

Irv was a volunteer every Wednesday for many years at the Kline Galland Home. His was one of the schmoozers. His job was to talk to the residents at the Kline and he loved every moment there.

Irv and Viviane together with a few other couple were instrumental in creating Shalom House – a home for Jewish disabled young adults. It would later become part of Jewish Family services.

Irv was an active baker at Sephardic Bikur Holim with Eli Varon and Katherine Scharhon, Tillie Halfon and Magda Schaloum.

Irv was an honest man and a man of real integrity. It was a trait that he held in high regard in others and something that he exemplified in all aspects of his life. He was a patient man. He was extremely stoic with his illness. He rarely complained and just took each day as a blessing. He was a man of few words, but when he spoke you listened. His use of English was phenomenal, indeed his only regret was that he never went to University, he would have loved to have been an English literature professor. But most importantly he loved his wife, he was so proud of his children and he loved his grand kids.

I will miss his exuberance and zest for life. He had a way about him which you just wanted to be part of his life.

Funeral services were held on Sunday, July 31th at 11:00 pm at Seattle Sephardic Brotherhood Cemetery, Shoreline, WA.