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Thursday, May 30, 2024

Alfred Rubin


Alfred Rubin was born December 10, 1920, in Naperville, Illinois, the son of Samuel Rubin and Anna Pomerantz. He had a younger brother, Norman. Al’s sisters were Lucille Cooper Gutman and Gertrude Levy.

Al attended the Naperville schools, graduating from Naperville High School in 1938 and the University of Illinois in 1942.

Alfred Rubin

Al was a member of the ROTC at U of I and he enlisted in the Army following his graduation where he was awarded a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Cavalry. He was wounded in battle during the Normandy invasion on D-Day and was awarded the Silver Star, a Purple Heart with two oak leaf clusters, and the Bronze Arrowhead for Invasion, all for his gallantry and bravery.

He also was honored by the French government for his service and is mentioned in the book, “The Longest Day” by Cornelius Ryan.

When Al returned home from World War II, he opened a restaurant, The Rafter House, which was located at 224 S. Washington Street. The restaurant later evolved into Colonial Caterers.

On November 25, 1951, Al and Naomi Greifer were married. They were the parents of Steven, Jennifer and Lydia.

When the Korean War broke out, he reentered the service and was stationed at Fort Knox as an instructor in the Armored School.

He later served on the Naperville School District 78 Board from 1964 to 1969, and the Edward Hospital Board.

Al ran unsuccessfully for City Council in 1955 and then was appointed to the Naperville City Council in 1971 to fill a vacancy. He continued in that capacity until 1977.

He served on the Bank of Naperville and the Harris Bank of Naperville Boards from 1975 to 1990, the Naperville Riverwalk Commission from 1981 to 1997, the Naperville Park District Board of Commissioners from 1987 to 1997, and the Marianjoy Rehabilitation Hospital Board from 1994 to 1997.

Al was one of the founders of the Naperville United Way and the Naperville Education Foundation. He was a member of the Central Area Naperville Development Organization (CANDO) from 1972 to 1996. Al also served on the board of directors of Edward Hospital, the Naperville Economic Development Partnership and Temple B’Nai Israel in Aurora and the Congregation Beth Shalom in Naperville, the Naperville Lions Club, and the Rotary Club of Naperville.

In addition, Al was a member of the Naperville VFW Post, 3873 and American Legion Post 43.

The civic leader and businessman also was instrumental in the development of much of downtown Naperville.

Since 2006, Veterans Valor has stood to represent the patriotism and sacrifices of numerous local men and women who have served our country and fought for freedom around the globe. Depicted in the sculpture by Shirley McWorter-Moss are Army 1st Lt. Al Rubin, Platoon Commander; Army Staff Sgt. Leo Kuefler, Tank Commander; Army Air Corps Cpt. Vinnie Mazza, B-24 Pilot; Navy Lt. Bob Wehli, Pt. Boat Commander; and Marine Corps 1st Lt. Don Darfler, Fighter Pilot.

The Alfred Rubin Riverwalk Community Center, pictured at the top of this column, located at 305 W. Jackson Avenue was named in his honor. He is one of five Naperville natives depicted in the Naperville Century Walk sculpture, “Veterans Valor,” located on Washington Street and Van Buren Avenue.

He was a Life Member of Euclid Lodge No. 65, A.F. & A.M., and Euclid Chapter No. 13, R.A.M.

Al Rubin died December 16, 1997, in Naperville. He was buried in the Beth Shalom Section of the Naperville Cemetery.

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Tim Ory
Tim Ory
Tim Ory is a fifth-generation Naperville native, descended from Francois Sebastien Ory, who immigrated to America from Alsace Lorraine, France, in 1844. Signing off as "Tim Ory, Historian, Euclid Lodge No. 65 Ancient Free & Accepted Masons," Tim adds that he continues to research the History of the Masonic Lodge and Naperville every day. Contact him at tjory@sbcglobal.net.