Irwin M. Berkley age 86 of Lincolnwood, IL passed away on April 21, 2020 surrounded by his family after a brief battle with cancer. Beloved husband for 38 years of Karen Berkley, nee Gress Loving father of his 7 children, Lonni Berkley, Avi (Susan Dominic) Berkley and Abra Berkley (Tony Ryba) of his previous marriage to the late Eloise Berkley, nee Saperstein and Jonathan (Erin) Berkley, David (Erica) Berkley, Steven Berkley (Brenda Eval) and Sarah Berkley. Irwin was also the adoring grandfather to his eight grandchildren Brandon Berkley-Vigil (Dipa Patel), Abe Berkley-Vigil (Xuan Li), Sylvia Ryba, Ely Ryba, Aaron Ryba, Theodore Berkley, Ari Berkley and Rowan Berkley. He was thrilled with the recent arrival of his great-granddaughter Maya Ariella Berkley-Vigil. He will also be remembered by his sister Gail Rothstein, his nephew Mitchell (Sharon) Rothstein and niece Lauren (Jim) Mosman and great nephews and great niece Jordan, Zachary and Sadie. Irwin attended Penn Grammar School in Chicago and graduated from Marshall High School in 1951. He attended Northwestern University for his undergraduate degree and went on to receive his Juris Doctorate from Northwestern School of Law in 1959 after service in the United States Army. After practicing law for many years, he discovered his true passion in real estate. For forty years, Irwin was president and CEO of Century Development Group. Through Century Development, Irwin spearheaded developments of single family and multiple family units, shopping centers, affordable housing and office renovations in the greater Chicagoland area, Florida, Baltimore, Indianapolis, Virginia and Puerto Rico. In addition to Real Estate, Irwin opened Health Connections, a medical facility and a private home health agency in 1978. By 1997, Irwin built Health Connections into the largest unaffiliated freestanding home health agency in Illinois. He was a pioneer in the development of home delivery of medical services to aging population who could not otherwise access medical services. He also prided himself on providing high quality housing to the underserviced and overlooked communities and built a 100-bed senior living community in rural Illinois which became a model for assisted living facilities throughout the nation. Irwin also had a strong sense of community and his Jewish identity that he instilled in his children and always found ways to do Tikkun Olam—to make the world a better place. Irwin was passionate about Israel and related organizations such as Bar-Ilan University, JUF, JNF and AIPAC and went to Israel during the Six-Day War and Gulf War to show his support. Irwin was also an avid tennis player and Chicago sports fan. Irwin will always be remembered as a father figure to many and for his ever-present can-do attitude, unwavering support for his children and grandchildren, empowering pep talks, immense ruach and a champion of the underdog. Private graveside services are necessary, however family and friends who can't attend can view the funeral at Irwin’s webpage on www.mitzvahfunerals.com Friday April 24th at 12 Noon live, or any-time after the funeral. Info Mitzvah Memorial Funerals 630-MITZVAH 630-648-9824
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