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January 09, 2004 - Image 77

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2004-01-09

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A Free Spirit

definitive opinions about world affairs.
"If you got into a conversation or
a debate with Kenny, you had better
IC enny Birnholtz was
have done some research and you
going to change the
had better know your facts — espe-
cially when it came to the Middle
"His dream was to
East," Rabbi Berkun said of Kenny,
work to create an ideal world in
whose college degree was in history
which no one was excluded," said
with a concentration in Mideast
Rabbi Jonathan Berkun of
Congregation Shaarey Zedek. "A
Kenny traveled to Israel several
world in which everyone earned a
times, including spending a year on
fair wage; a world in which everyone
a kibbutz and studying in the Nativ
was taken care of."
College Leadership Program. He had
Kenneth "Kenny" Birnholtz, of
planned to go again next month.
Sylvan Lake, died sud-
"He was so persua-
denly Jan. 1, 2004, at
sive and so adamant
age 23.
about things," said his
A graduate of Detroit
brother, Jeremy. "He
Country Day School
was such an idealist
and the University of
and he always had a
Michigan, Kenny
plan. He continually
hoped to attend
learned more and more
University of
about what interested
California-Berkeley law
him — like politics.
school and work as an
He knew every single
advocate for human
thing about the situa-
tion in Israel."
Kenny was a passion-
Rabbi Berkun
ate student. "He need-
described Kenny as a
Kenny Birnholtz
ed to know every-
sensitive listener, the
thing," said his mother,
friend with the
Sue Birnholtz.
charmed, magnetic
Before traveling to Europe, he not
personality everyone loved to be
only read a stack of travel books, but around. His dynamic personality,
also researched to find the alterna-
warmth of spirit, sense of humor,
tive places that everybody didn't see.
empathy , for others made him a con-
During a family trip to his grandpar- fidant.
ents' Czechoslovakian and Polish
"He told me life was something
childhood homes, "Kenny borrowed
you shouldn't try to control, but
someone's guitar, found the place
should just live," said Kenny's sister
where backpackers meet and experi-
Melanie Birnholtz of Washington
enced Europe in his own way," his
mother said.
"He loved life," Rabbi Berkun
A non-conformist, Kenny bypassed said. "He had remarkable passion
his school's dress code by wearing
and energy. He was a vibrant and
the required jacket and tie — but
vivacious spirit [who] packed a lot of
always with two different colored
living into 23 years. Whatever
Kenny did, he did with all of his
"He was a unique and free spirit,"
soul and with all of his might."
Rabbi Berkun said. "He openly
As a teen, Kenny was a United
expressed disdain for popular culture Synagogue Youth officer at Shaarey
and popular politics."
Zedek and led High Holiday services
His father Sandy said, "He never
there for first- and second-graders.
wanted a cell phone, a car. He never
"And Kenny believed every Jew
asked for money for anything. His
should experience Camp Ramah,"
needs were simple."
said Rabbi Berkun of the Canadian
Rabbi Berkun said, "Kenny would
camp where he first met Kenny, who
have been happy on a mountaintop
was a camper and later a counselor.
with his guitar — and the daily deliv-
"No one had more spirit than
ery of the New York Times. He took
A FREE SPIRIT on page 78
current events very seriously and had


Staff Writer

Staff Writer


avid and Juliana
Lipschultz were an insep-
arable couple -- from
their romantic meeting
on an Aspen, Colo., ski slope, to their
storybook wedding at Temple Beth El
in Bloomfield Township, to their
award-winning television show in
"He was not only my husband, he
was my best friend," Juliana Lipschultz
said. "We kept talking about how we
should have separate lives,
how we should have
independent interests. It
never happened."
On Feb. 7, 2003, Style
at Jewish News featured
an account of the couple's
October 2002 wedding,
an event that featured
eight parents, three sib-
lings and eight stepsib-
lings. Everyone got along;
the sun shone; the Krispy
Kreme doughnut cake
was delicious. "It was so
romantic," his wife told
the paper. "So David."
On Jan. 3, 2004, David
Lipschultz, 33, lost his life in a skiing
accident on Aspen Mountain.
According to the chief deputy coroner
of Pitkin County, where the accident
occurred, he suffered a spinal cord
injury that killed him almost instanta-
Mr. Lipschultz was born and raised
in Phoenix, where he was a state cham-
pion tennis player and a member of
the U.S. tennis team. After graduating
from the University of Arizona in
Tucson, he received a full scholarship
to New York's Columbia University,
where he earned a master's degree with
honors from its School of International
and Public Affairs.
A freelance writer for many publica-
tions, including the Neu, York Times
and USA Today, Mr. Lipschultz's beat
included everything from restaurant
and movie reviews to business and
money management. He also worked
in marketing and public relations,
mostly for cosmetic and pharmaceuti-
cal companies.
As co-producers of The Week In
Aspen, the Lipschultzes won a Telly

Award, given to outstanding non-net-
work television productions through-
out the United States. Last July, the
couple moved to the Los Angeles
Juliana Lipschultz was in California
when the accident took place. Her par-
ents, Shelley and Joel Tauber of West
Bloomfield, were still in Colorado,
waiting for a flight home through the
snow and fog when they learned of
their son-in-law's death.
"David was an unbelievable athlete;
he gave 100 percent to everything he
did," Shelley Tauber said:
"He was the smartest person I
knew," Juliana
Lipschultz said.
"Everybody looked up
to him."
She remembers her
husband as a person
with grace and will,
someone who knew
what he wanted and
made it happen.
"He traveled the
world; he lived every
single day to the
fullest," Juliana
Lipschultz said.
"Everything he did was
filled with such grace."
"He was a beautiful soul," she said.
"He is a beautiful soul."
David Bernard Lipschultz is survived
by his wife, Juliana Lipschultz, of Los
Angeles; mother, Marilyn Mitchell and
her husband, Donn Kessler, of
Phoenix; father, Allen Lipschultz and
his wife, Susan Lipschultz, of Phoenix;
brothers and sisters-in-law, Rabbi
Jeffrey and Naomi Lipschultz; Frank
and Margarita Lipschultz, Adam
Lipschultz; sister, Janet Lipschultz;
grandmother, Inez Lipschultz; mother-
in-law, Shelley Tauber and her hus-
band, Joel Tauber, of West Bloomfield;
and father-in-law, Robert Katzman and
his wife, Lisa Katzman, of Bloomfield
Interment was in Phoenix.
Contributions may be made to
Temple Beth Sholom, 208 Madrona
Street, Chula Vista, CA 91910.
Cards or communications for
Juliana Lipschultz or Shelley and
Joel Tauber may be sent to Joel
Tauber's office, 27777 Franklin
Road, Suite 1850, Southfield, MI
48034. Cl

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