BASSATINE NEWS  the ONLY Jewish newsletter reporting directly from Egypt
A Community Chronicle put out by the Jewish Community Council (JCC) of Cairo since 1995



1910 - 4 October 2004



clockwise: 1930s; at Heliopolis races with Maurice Weinstein circa 1945; decorated by the Papal Nuncio for lifetime dedication to charity work 1990s; greeting Mrs. Anwar al-Sadat 1970s; with Hillary and Chelsea Clinton 1999.

laying flowers on her grave

The Weinstein family of Egypt wish to thank the many friends, neighbors and JCC community members for their condolences and in particular the following persons for their kind messages of support:

Mrs. Sherifa Mehrez, president of Tahseen El Sehha Foundation
Daniel and Sheila Kurtzer, former American ambassador to Egypt
Nitza, wife of the late Ambassador Eli Benelissar
Yacov and Yaffa Gil, former minister Israeli Embassy, Cairo.
Ms. Huguette Boulad, former president of Caritas (Egypt)
Mr. & Mrs. Zvi Mazel, former Israeli ambassador in Cairo
Mr. Steve Bondy, American Embassy Bahrein
Ms. Mildred Mcloud, Australia.
Doctor Max Salama, President & members of JCC Alexandria
Mtr. Zakaria Mahfouz and Partner, legal advisor to JCC-Alexandria
Mrs. Ruth Hannuka, Israeli Academic Center, Jerusalem
Mireille & Cyril Lenos, France
Denise & Clement Shamaa, Italy

and our appreciation to those dear friends who contacted us by email:

Dear Carmen,
I had not visited the Bassatine News site for a long time. I was shocked to learn of the death of your mother. Gillian and I remember her as a very courageous lady, who together with yourself, did so much to keep the last vestige of our community going. We know what a wonderful support she was for you and we hope that even without that support you will be able to carry on the good work.
Solomon Green
Dear Carmen, I would like to offer my condolences to you on the passing of your mother. I saw the notice on the Internet. I remember you speaking of her when we had dinner together about a year ago at the Flying Fish restaurant and am sure it must be a great loss for you and the community. With my warm wishes and sincere sympathy.
Valerie Collis (in Cambridge).
Please accept my sincerest condolences on the loss of your mother. May you be spared further sorrows. Sincerely,
Israel Bonan

Browsing the internet, I just came across the Bassatine News homepage. I am sorry to learn of your mother's death. Brigitte and I would like to express our sincere condolences on this sad occasion.

Rudolf and Brigitte Agstner, Vienna

My dear Carmen it is with the deepest regret that I Have heard from Annabella of your dear mother's passing away. In my mind' s eye I shall always see her as the positive, energetic, entreprising lady we all knew. I am sure that all the fond memories of your Mum will stay with you and Gloris for all the years to come. To you both I extend my condoleances and deep sympathy. Lots of love
Sarah (Mrs Sarah Fedida, London)
A Mme. Carmen & Glorice Weinstein:
Je désire exprimer par ce simple message, mes sincères condoleances por la grande perte de mère feu Mme. Esther Weinstein. Je suis un des peu jeuifs d'Egypte qui habite le Pérou, et mes parents proches et eloignées sont enterrés au Cimetiere de Bassatine, je porte le même nom que mon grand père ; Nessim Scialom (Chalom) décédé en 1935, mes parents, Elie et Victorine Scialom. J'aimerai tant vous donner un coup de main pour la merveilleuse oeuvre que feu vôtre mère a entrepris au point de m'offrir volontairment a tout entreprise que vous coryez utile pour preserver nos valeurs d'antant encore vivantes dand notre coeur..Bien a vous.
Nessim E. Scialom
Santa Margarita, 260 - 301
San Isidro, Lima - 27 Pérou.

Je suis navrée d'apprendre le décés de ta mère et je te présente mes condolèances les plus affectueuses et les plus sincères. Je peux imaginer que cela représente une grande perte pour toi. Je sais combien elle était présente et combien tu la soutenais, combien vous vous souteniez l'une l'autre. Je me rappelle de l'avoir rencontrée au magasin et j'étais admirative de sa vivacité et ténacité. Je veux croire que dans l'au delà ta chère maman et notre cher jacques se retrouvent. Il l'aimait beaucoup et cela l'aurait surement beaucoup affecté.
Pascale Hassoun, wife of the late Dr Jacques Hassoun.
Dear Carmen,
I am very sad to learn of your mother's death. I hope that her passing was not too difficult for her or for you. I think of you often and hope that you are well. With much love,
Joyce Zonana
Veuillez recevoir mes condoléances. Je regrette de ne l'avoir pas connu. Irene et moi aurons une pensée pour elle. Veuillez, chere Carmen, trouver l'apaisement dans son souvenir. Bien à vous
Adam et Irene Leibowitz, Paris.
Please receive my sincerest condolences for the passing away of Mrs. Esther Weinsten, and hope you will keep up your excellent work in the JCC.
Elvira Dentes
Dear Carmen,
How sad I am to learn of the loss of your mother. It is a very poignant loss, and although you have been so fortunate that she was with you for so many years, her leaving is not easier to bear. Please accept my deep condolence. My mother has now been gone 10 years, yet while the sharpness of loss has waned, I miss her very much and in this way she lives on with me. I do hope that I will be able to see you this year and lay a small stone on your mother's grave at Bassatine.
With my warmest good wishes,
Phyllis Lambert
President Canadian Architecture Center, Montreal
Dear Carmen,
My deepest sympathies. Whatever the age at which we lose our parents, we become orphans. Your mother gave you to experience the forgiveness of God, and they will stay with you forever.
Michel de Salaberry, former Ambassador of Canada to Egypt.
Dear Carmen and Glorice
I was so sorry to learn of the death of your dear mother, Esther. I remember her well from my years in more than 20 years ago. She was so devoted to the community and to Egypt. You should be very proud of her achievements. While your mother lived a long full life, I know from experience that death is never easy or expected. You have my deepest sympathy. al-Baqiyah fi hayatkum.
David Hirsch
With the death of Esther Weisntein on October 4, 2004, the Jewish community in Egypt has lost its last grande dame. Born Esther Chaki on July 14, 1910, she grew up in the golden years of the thirties and married Maurice Weinstein. The couple had two daughters, Carmen and Glorice. Widowed in 1953, Esther took over the running of the Weinstein printing and stationery shop on Sherif street with the help of her daughter Carmen. In 1996 she took upon herself the thankless task of president of the small Jewish community of Cairo and worked tirelessly to help its members and to preserve the Jewish heritage. She was also very active in charitable works and was for many years on the board of Tahsin el seha, Caritas and Unione feminile italiana. In 2000 her efforts were recognized by the Vatican and she received the papal medal at a special ceremony in the Nunciature. Esther Weinstein, who spoke fluently French, Italian, English as well as Arabic was also a lover of arts who enjoyed going to the opera and to concerts as long as her health permitted. Her ready smile and her great charm will be remembered by her many friends.
Michèle Mazel
My dear Carmen! How are you now? Not easy, but that's life. It'll be strange to be alone at home without your mom. She was the center of your life... but life streams on and we stream with life.
Thelma Oded
I understand so well your sorrow Carmen dear. Losing our loved ones, a mother for you and for me a husband, is sad and so painful. I am glad that you feel you have honored your mother and that your saving of the Bassatine Cemetery found another and very personal justification. And I like the image of the numerous flowers. For my mother we had a small but very personal ceremony in the funeral home with many loving small speeches made by those who had known and loved her. Yes, it pleased me but she is no more and that is so sad. And who knows, maybe now I will visit my native land again some day. Je t'embrasse affectueusement amie de ma jeunesse,
Elsie Shallon
Dearest Carmen,
It is very sad to hear the news about the passing of your mother. I met her in the summer and the memory of her spirit and being will always be with me. I know it is the hardest thing to loose a mother. I will say the Kaddish for her. I also want to send you and your family blessings of comfort and condolences. May you be strong during the coming 12 months, and may you not have sorrow in your life again. May God be your comfort,
Ziona Zelano - Rabbi
Chere Carmen,
L'annonce du deces de ta maman qui ma beaucoup attriste car pour moi c'etait aussi ma Mere je noublierais jamais les beaux moments et annees vecues ensembles je la revois encore a la mer rouge assise avec nous pendant que nous pechions les abou nokta et toute contente quand on attrapait plusieurs. Apres cela on retournait au chalet pour que ma chere Heidy les nettoies et avec les crevettes ou les crabes et plusieurs verres de bieres on etait tres heureux et puis quand on on aller chez vous pour dinner le plat de gargir m'attendait je ne peux continuer car les larmes me viennet et je demandes a Dieu de te venir en aide en ces tristes monments on t'embraces bien fort.
Dr. Andre Naccache
Chere Carmen,
Je suis sincerement desole d'apprendre cette terrible nouvelle qui me chagrine beaucoup. Madame Weinstein laissera le souvenir d'une femme devouee et attachee a sa communaute. Elle sera pleuree par tous les fils du Nil Je vous presente toutes mes condoleances.
Moise Rahmani - Belgium

Chère Carmen,

Je viens d'apprendre la nouvelle et j'ai été profodement ému , je ne connaissais pas personnellement Madame Esther mais j'ai beaucoup entendu parler de sa pesonnalité , des ses actes charitables , tout ce qu'elle a pu faire pour la communauté juive du Caire et pour les autres , je pense qu'elle constituait un pont entre les differentes communautés de ce pays, son nom , j'espère restera gravé dans la mémoire de ce Pays. Paix en son Ame.
Je me souviens cet été , je souhaitais la rencontrer mais faute de temps ça ne s'est pas fait...
Je te presente Carmen toute mes sincères condoléances et te souhaite du courage et de la patience à toi et ta soeur. , Continue ce beau travail qu'elle a commencé et puisse un jour la paix regner sur l'Egypte et le Monde. Carmen, si tu as besoin d'aide qu'elle qu'il soit , fais-le savoir. David se joint à moi et te presente ses Condoléances.
Réda Zerriatte

Dear Carmen,
We have just came back from a long tour to China, when I got a sad e-mail from Telma, telling me about your mother. We are both very sorry about your loss and want to share with you and your sister our deepest sympathy and send you our sincere condolences. We were very lucky to know your mother and to enjoy her wisdom, good manners, pleasant company and friendship. We hope she didn't suffer too much. The Jewish community in Cairo and all your many friends in Israel and around the world would remember her personality and contributions. May you never know sorrow.
Take care,
Nily and Gideon Ben-Ami - Former Israeli Ambassador to Egypt

Dear Mrs Weinstein, we are so sorry to hear of your Mother's passing away. We hope it was not too painful, and may God take care of her. We do hope to see you again sometime. Best wishes,
Nicolette and Jacques Mawas
Dear Carmen
How sad. We always remember your mother as a most elegant lady, carrying with pride both the jewish tradition and the Egyptian culture. We feel so sorry for you, your family, your friends and the people in the house who must heave loved her dearly and nust feel the emptiness she left passing away. Yacov is in France and I write in his name too, knowing how also he always felt towards your mother. May this be the end of your sorrow.
Ruth and Jacob Sade - Israel
Dear Carmen,

I just wanted to write you and tell you that you are in our thoughts and prayers and that your mother's name will be mentioned at the Yortziet Ceremony in my synagogue here in New York. I am deeply sorry for your loss and am at your service for anything you may need. Please let me know how I can help.
Love Harun
Aaron Kiviat - NY, USA

Our heartfelt condolences to you on the passing of your wonderful Mother, Esther. May she rest in peace.
Sandy and Ben Zupan - USA

Dear Carmen and Glorice,
Please accept our sincere and deepest condolences on the loss of your mother. May you be spared further sorrow.  We were also sorry to hear from Eli Antebe of the fact that Carmen broke her leg. We wish you a speedy recovery.
Elaine and Mitchell Brownstein - Canada


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