There are many tributes today, honoring and remembering Harvey Krueger, who passed on April 23, 2017. He is remembered as a brilliant business leader, a compassionate and active philanthropist in the Jewish community, a lover of Israel and justice, a deeply devoted husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and family man. And always, as the husband of Connie.
All these things are true. But, today, I am remembering Harvey because he was my friend. I first met Harvey during a major contract negotiation, where I was struck by what a force he was—and how he got what he wanted. It was later that we again met through my work at Tanenbaum. At first, I knew him only as a member of Tanenbaum’s Leadership Council. Soon, we were in friendship, discussing everything from equity and fairness in the Middle East, to anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, tribalism, to Tanenbaum’s peace building work and global workplace strategies, to our philosophies on marriage and life. He was always caring, always incredibly smart, and always made me think.
When I last saw Harvey, not as a representative of Tanenbaum but as his friend, it was for lunch in his home. It was after Connie was gone, and he was not doing well. When the time came for me to leave, he said he wanted to do something for me. I told him there was nothing to do, that I had just come to visit. But he insisted, got his wallet and handed me what would be his last gift for Tanenbaum.
That gift was not a large monetary gift. But it is was one of the most meaningful gifts I have received. It was a gift of the heart and a statement to our friendship. It was a privilege to call Harvey friend and, an honor, when he called me friend in return.
I miss him.