By news wires
Raymond G. Perelman, who built a fortune buying and selling factories amid America’s industrial decline and gave more than $300 million to Penn’s medical school and Philadelphia art and Jewish charities, died Monday.
The son of immigrants, Perelman bought and sold scores of companies with a decisiveness that inspired his contemporaries. Perelman found opportunities even in bankruptcies.
He also became one of the Philadelphia region’s greatest philanthropists, leaving his mark at the University of Pennsylvania and beyond. In politics, he tended to back Republicans, including 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
Son Ronald Perelman, who works out of New York, is the head of the MacAndrews & Forbes conglomerate, which has included Revlon cosmetics and many other retail brands.
“To me, Ray personally reflected an important span in our history,” Rabbi Avraham Shemtov, Head Shliach of Philadelphia and Chairman of Agudas Chassidei Chabad International, told Jewish Insider. Both father and son generously contributed to Chabad causes.
“Fleeing the persecution of Europe, living through the wartime, after which we found him actively participating and indeed becoming a leader in Jewish communal life – in Philadelphia, nationally and generally on behalf of Israel,” Rabbi Shemtov said.
“Jewish education and continuity was of paramount importance to him, and his legacy of compassion and strong Jewish identity – which the Rebbe inspired and nurtured – will certainly continue robustly through Ronald and his family. May his memory be for a blessing.”