May 20, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Camp Dora Golding Mourns Mendy Bauman, z”l

(Courtesy of Camp Dora Golding) The Camp Dora Golding Family was deeply saddened to hear about the sudden passing of their beloved board president, Mr. Mendy Bauman, z”l.

The Bauman family’s deep connection to camp spans three decades. Aside from being the camp’s president, Mendy’s wife, Sharon, was once the secretary, their son Dov was a camper and several grandchildren attended the camp.

Mendy owned Glatt Mart in Brooklyn and was a popular personality in Belle Harbor, where he lived close to 30 years. He was an entrepreneur who understood that having a good product was only as good as its marketing; you have to know how to make it attractive to your consumer. His insight and acumen were vital in helping Camp Dora Golding and Camp Dina become the popular camps they are today.

Almost 30 years ago, he befriended the camp’s (then) director, Rabbi David Himber, and joined its board of directors. Ironically, during a meeting that he was unable to attend, he was voted to become the board president.

Mendy was very involved in the camp’s day-to-day operations. He visited camp each summer and would speak with campers and staff members to discuss how they were enjoying camp, and what could be done to make camp even better. “Mendy would often ask me, ‘What else can we do for the kids?’ The conversation was always about the camp, never about him,” recalls Rabbi A.C. Posner, head counselor. Rabbi Dani Staum, a division head, remembers Mendy’s smile. “You could tell from the look on his face just how much he loved camp. He would drive around and watch the various activities. It was clear that he felt personal satisfaction in seeing how happy the campers were.”

In 1990, when Camp Dora Golding decided to open a sister camp, Camp Dina, Mendy was very involved in the major undertaking of getting the new camp off the ground. He was part of the driving force that ensured the purchase of the new campground and its restoration.

At the beginning of every board meeting, Mendy would always share a good story or light comment, to set the tone. Mr. Alex Gold, the camp director, noted that Mendy was always a true professional. “It wasn’t just his uncompromising devotion and care for every aspect of camp, it was also the way he handled everything—with patience and his trademark smile and humor. It was always an honor working together with Mendy. Personally, it wasn’t always about work. He was a genuine friend who always wanted the best for myself and family. We truly valued his friendship and will sorely miss him.”

Fellow and Veteran Board Member, Moishe Wargon, recalls: “Mendy understood the value of Torah Study and providing a wholesome environment of living and exhibiting Jewish values even during the summer months.  Not only was it important for the campers at both our boys and girls camp to have top-notch physical, sports and athletic facilities to give them “the summer of a lifetime”, but it was equally as important to him to nourish their minds and souls with learning and middos development. That’s why he spearheaded the campaign to build a new Shul/Bais Medrash for our boy’s camp and upgrading the Shul and learning gazebos at our girl’s camp. As far as our personal interactions with Mendy on and off the board, I can say confidently, on behalf of all the past and present Board members, that he was the “ultimate mensch” espoused the values of Bein Adom L’chaveiro to its highest order.  We will all miss him greatly.”

During his presidency, camper attendance at Camp Dora Golding doubled. In addition, every summer many new facilities were added, and each had his approval and guidance. Binyamin Daiches, assistant director, noted that Mendy was a stickler for the details that most people don’t notice. “Whenever we discussed a new project, Mendy wanted to know about all the details. For Mendy, it wasn’t just about the function, it was about the aesthetics, the beauty and the entire presentation.”

He was particular about cleanliness and the constant maintenance and upkeep of the camp’s state-of-the-art facilities. Using his expertise and knowledge from Glatt Mart, Mendy helped design the modern kitchens at both campuses. Camp Dora Golding is legendary for its beautiful campus, and Mendy was a big part of that.

Camp Dora Golding also prides itself for its incredible learning program and focus on ruchneyus. None of that could have been accomplished without Mendy’s encouragement and backing. He was involved in the construction of the camp’s magnificent Bais Medrash a few years ago and was very proud of all the learning that took place in camp throughout the summer.

His petirah is a tragic loss for the entire camp family, and his visits, and everything else he did for the camp, will be deeply missed. This summer, the camp will be dedicating the learning program in his memory.

May his neshama have an aliyah, may his family be comforted and may we only hear of simchas.

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