Kew Gardens Hills Street Renamed For Rabbi Avraham Schechter z”l


shechterNew York City Councilmember James Gennaro on February 17 hosted a ceremony renaming a stretch of 72nd Drive between 147th and 150th Streets in Kew Gardens Hills, Queens, as “Rabbi Avraham Schechter Way” in memory of longtime community leader Rabbi Avraham Schechter. Schechter family members and friends were present, as were other elected local officials and community leaders. Rabbi Schechter died in 2006; his wife Surry, children Miriam Kramer, Tzvi Schechter, Chani Chanales and Yehudis Hershfang, brothers Rabbi Aaron Schechter and Rabbi Mendel Schechter of Brooklyn and a number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren survive him.”Rabbi Schechter was a spiritual and community leader who showed the way to countless Queens residents,” Gennaro, who sponsored the street renaming legislation, said. “The sign marking ‘Rabbi Avraham Schechter Way’ will not only show the way to the residents of Kew Gardens Hills, but [also] remind them of the legacy he left behind here.”

Rabbi Schechter was born in the East New York section of Brooklyn in 1936 and moved to Kew Gardens Hills in 1961. He became a member of Community Board 8, where he served for 26 years, and was chairman of the zoning committee. He was the founder and chairman of the Jewish Action Committee and United Yeshiva, and was a member of the Vaad Harabonim of Queens, the Queens General Assembly and the JFK Democratic Club. He also served as a liaison to the 107th Police Precinct and worked on a community patrol, and was a member of the board of directors of the Queens Valley Homeowners Association. He was also president of the Clergy Council of Queens and editor of the Voice of Mid-Queens newspaper. Schechter also informally served his neighbors as a marriage counselor, a financial advisor, a parenting mentor and a listening ear for anyone who needed the advice of an elder.

“Rabbi Avraham Schechter was an influential figure in Kew Gardens Hills, offering an ear when congregants needed counsel, a voice when they needed an advocate and representation for his community both in Queens and in the larger sphere of Jewish life,” State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky said.

“This is a very fitting tribute to a man who worked tirelessly on behalf of the Kew Gardens Hills Community,” Assemblymember Nettie Mayersohn said. “In his own quiet and kind way, Rabbi Schechter spent much of his day advocating for the residents of Kew Gardens Hills. His hard work and dedication helped to create a better community for us all.”

“My husband, Avraham, and I were married for 48 fabulous years,” Surry Schechter said. “I spent a lifetime being proud of him and continue to do so. He is the gift that just keeps on giving. He was involved in so many different community areas because of his love for all people. The street renaming is a beautiful recognition of his community involvement.”

Also in attendance were Community Board 8 District Manager Marie Adam- Ovide, Marc Haken, representing Assemblymember Rory Lancman, Jeff Gottleib and Mike Sidell.

{Queens Gazette/ Newscenter}


  1. Of course, I remember him from MYRCB.
    He had wonderfull Yiddishe, “borsht belt” humor, disappearing today because Anglication, usage of names like “Moses” and “David” in Torah Publishing houses’ books.
    Few in Torah community were as involved in tzorchei tzibbur to the extent described above about Rav Avrohom Mordechai Schechter, zeicher tzaddik le’vrocho.

  2. He just loved people. He used that Ahavah to bring people closer to Yiddishkeit. Rabbi Schechter was for me and many others, a father figure, a Rebbi and most importantly a friend. Klal Yisroel lost a real treasure. Whenever I look at that street sign I will think of his warm smile and encouraging words.

  3. I remember him, from when I was a child, as the funniest guy around. Every time I met him, he made me laugh. I will always always miss him.

  4. It is so appropriate that my father had a street sign named after him. He gave direction to so many and helped them find their way. His “Way” was one of warmth, Ahavas Hatorah, Ahavas Yisroel, being Marbeh Kovod Shmayim and finding the Divine in every person and every thing.
    All that he accomplished was with the incredible life-long support and devotion of my mother Mrs. Surry Schechter. May Hkb”h give her many more years of gezunt and nachas

  5. My Zaidy was a really special person. Besides for his efforts in the community, he was first and foremost dedicated to his family. He was always there for us, supporting us in every way. He was the best Zaidy ever and is sorely missed!!