Norman Dolgoff, born June 4, 1935, passed away at age 87 on June 14, 2022. A native Savannahian, Norman will be remembered as a devoted and loving family member, loyal friend, huge sports enthusiast, and gentle soul.
Mr. Sunshine, as Norman liked to call himself, was a man of character, principle, and integrity. He was very clear on right versus wrong. Norman was a true mensch, who performed acts of kindness naturally and without thought of reciprocity. He was a charmer and a jokester, a keen and insightful observer of people and the world, and exhibited a unique and funny combination of humility and ego. Norman never met a stranger, readily recalled faces and names, and as a result was blessed with a large circle of friends.
Norman was a proud alumnus of Benedictine Military Academy’s Class of 1953 and maintained friendships with his classmates throughout his life. After high school, he attended Armstrong where he received an Associate’s Degree and then the University of Georgia and Georgia Southern University where he graduated with a B.S. in Education, majoring in Health and Physical Education. Norman also served in the U.S. Coast Guard prior to receiving his undergraduate degree. While working at the Houston Jewish Community Center as Assistant Director of Health and Physical Education, he earned his M.S. in Health and Physical Education from the University of Houston. It was in Houston that he met his beloved bride of 57 years, Sherry, whom he brought back to Savannah in 1969. Norman became the Health and Physical Education Director at the Jewish Educational Alliance (JEA) and served in that capacity for several years before taking a position with the Georgia Department of Agriculture where he worked until his retirement.
Known in his younger years for his exceptional athletic ability, Norman was awarded an athletic scholarship to BC and played both varsity football and basketball there. He won the 18-and-under city-wide tennis championship and was a badminton, ping pong, and handball champion in college where he played basketball and softball as well. He was an introducer of racquetball to Savannah and a regular leisure player of multiple sports as an adult.
An engaged member of his community, Norman served on the board of the JEA, volunteered with numerous charitable organizations, and helped out friends and family in need. A man of faith and committed to his Jewish heritage, he was a member of B’nai Brith Jacob Synagogue.
Norman adored his roles as husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He was preceded in death by his wife Sherry Roth Dolgoff, parents Max and Matilda (Tillie) Dolgoff, brother Ralph Dolgoff, and sister Shirley Dolgoff. Surviving are his daughters Marcey Alter (Howard), Karen Hasson (Mark), and Laura Roberson (Terrell), grandchildren Taylor, Sarah, and Matthew, and great granddaughter Layla; brother-in-law Leonard Roth and sisters-in-law Barbie Roth and Sylvia Dolgoff. He also leaves behind cousins, nieces, nephews, and lifelong friends whom he cherished.
Remembrances: Congregation B’nai B’rith Jacob, 5444 Abercorn St, Savannah, GA 31405 Savannah Jewish Federation, 5111 Abercorn St, Savannah, GA 31405
A graveside ceremony will take place at 9:00 am, Thursday, June 16, at Bonaventure Cemetery.