Leonard S. Sandel
Founder of Senior News, Humanitarian, Veteran and Senior Advocate
Jun 3, 2012, 8:56 a.m.
50+ LifeStyles Editor and Publisher Emeritus, Leonard Sandel, passed away peacefully on May 5, 2012 after a short illness. He died three days after what would have been his wife, Lenore’s, 90th birthday (Lenore passed away eight months ago).
The former mayor of Rockville Centre, Sandel was a businessman, popular civil servant and the founder of Senior News, a paper he ran out of his basement, which became 50+ LifeStyles.
“Leonard Sandel was a pioneer in communicating senior issues,” said 50+ LifeStyle’s publisher, Frank C. Trotta. “He was also a visionary, seeing the needs of the changing demographic on Long Island and responding to it in a hands-on mannwer. He will be sorely missed.”
Born in Brooklyn on February 9, 1920, Leonard Sandel was married to Lenore for 69 years, and was enrolled at St. John’s Law School when he enlisted in the US Army in 1942 and served in the European Theater, where he was awarded a Bronze Star for Meritorious Service.
Sandel remained active and maintained his physical fitness all his life, riding a stationary bike until two weeks before his death. He was buried in his Army dress uniform, which he proudly wore at various veteran ceremonies. He was a staunch supporter of veterans’ causes, as well.
His work and advocacy with and for seniors, minorities and veterans was a life-long passion of Sandel’s. He served in many community organizations and, along with Lenore, was a lifetime member of the Central Synagogue of Nassau County.
He was responsible for the purchase of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center, its renovation and expansion as a senior center. That center now is known as the Leonard Sandel Senior Center in his honor.
Sandel was buried at Beth David Cemetery in Elmont. His cortege was escorted by police and he was buried in his Army uniform along with the prayer shawl of his grandfather who was a cantor. A military honor guard played Taps and presented his only daughter, Susan, with the American Flag that covered his casket.