It is with tremendous respect and regret that MR shares news of the passing of Harry Bernard Silver, age 100, who died on Friday, April 8, 2022, at his home surrounded by family. Silver, who started his retail career working for his father-in-law at menswear store Weiss&Goldring in Alexandria La, was also a highly respected city councilman (from age 83 through age 99).
MR interviewed Silver by phone on his 100th birthday and got caught up in the city-wide celebration. Not only was the street adjacent to the store (founded in 1899) renamed Silver Drive but Alexandria’s mayor Jeff Hall had stopped by with certificates of commendation and appreciation. Said Hall, “Harry’s always looked to bring out the good in the city he has loved and called home for most of his life.”
Silver was born, raised, and went to law school in New Jersey. Never a fan of cold weather, he permanently moved to Central Louisiana in 1948 after having served there during World War II, meeting his wife Marilyn, and connecting with Alexandria’s forward-thinking community. He served in various capacities at the family-owned Weiss & Goldring before stepping back from day-to-day operations as Chairman at age 99.
The list of Silver’s board memberships and community service organizations could fill a book. From his official obituary: “Silver won numerous business and civic awards throughout his lifetime. He was truly unique and always the best-dressed person in the room. Over the years, he influenced many lives and promoted the betterment of Central Louisiana; while we are saddened by our loss, his legacy and contributions continue to inspire us.”
I asked Silver by phone on his 100th birthday what advice he’d give to those of us in the menswear business today; he suggested we stop complaining. “It doesn’t take brains to complain,” he reminded me. “Do your best and enjoy what you do or else do something else.”
In addition to his good works for the city he loved, Silver was known for his delightful sense of humor. When he received his first Covid vaccine at age 99 and was asked if he had any concerns, his only question was about the long-term effects of the vaccination.
Says his son Ted, now running the store, “How lucky am I to have worked side by side with this man for 50 years? He was my father, my mentor, and my very best friend.”
Harry Silver is survived by his wife of 73 years, Marilyn Levy Silver; children Kathy Silver Hussey (David), William Roy Silver, Ted Michael Silver (Ann Brame), and Amy Helene Silver. He also leaves three adored grandchildren and five cherished great-grandchildren.
Funeral services will be at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, April 13, 2022, at Alexandria City Hall. For those so inclined, memorials can be made to the Harry B. Silver Fund at the Central LA Community Foundation, P.O. Box 7432, Alexandria, LA 71306, or to a charity of choice.
To extend online notes of condolence: www.KramerFunerals.com.