by | May 4, 2018 | Obituaries

Norfolk—At the ripe young age of 93, Harry Pincus, Jr. passed away unexpectedly, but peacefully, on Thursday morning, April 19, 2018.

Harry was born in Norfolk in 1924, the son of the late Harry Pincus, Sr. and Esther D. Pincus. He grew up on Redgate Avenue in Ghent, Norfolk, close to Ohef Sholom Temple, where he was confirmed in 1940, where he later taught Sunday School for many years and where he served as president of the Ohef Sholom Temple congregation from 1975 to 1977. As a member of the Ohef Sholom Temple sponsored Boy Scout Troop, he achieved the rank of Eagle Scout and, with his oldest and best friend, Robert Nusbaum, participated in the Boy Scout Jamboree at the 1939 NYC World’s Fair.

Harry attended Blair Junior High School and graduated from Maury High School in 1942. In the fall of 1942, Harry attended the Virginia Military Institute (VMI), but before the end of his first year, he, with most of his first year RAT class, enlisted into the US Army, serving in WWII .

After the war, Harry returned home to attend first Syracuse University, for his undergraduate study, and then University of Michigan for Law School. Upon graduating from Michigan in 1951, Harry traveled on his GI Bill throughout Europe and Middle East. He studied in Paris, attended the initial United Nations political sessions, traveled with refugees to and visited the young State of Israel, watched and reported on the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games and made his first of two successful ascents of the Matterhorn in Switzerland (the second ascent at the age of 52 in 1977, with his son, Alex). It was while studying in Paris that Harry met and fell in love with Inger Bratland of Bergen, Norway.

Returning to the United States in 1953, Harry and Inger married, and Harry began his law career. With his good friends and partners, Robert Doumar and Montgomery Knight, he establish the prestigious law firm of Doumar, Pincus, Knight and Harlan. Practicing for over 37 years throughout Tidewater, Harry focused on Real Estate Law, Personal Injury, Domestic Relations and Decedent’s Estates, and he developed and maintained an unwavering reputation for fairness, integrity and zealous, if not dogged, advocacy.

Harry also gave of himself to the Greater Hampton Roads community. He was active with many civic, community and religious organizations, the Red Cross, Lions Club, Jewish Community Center, United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, Ohef Sholom Temple, and the Community Relation Council. to name a few.

Harry also enjoyed many extra-curricular activities and pastimes. Harry was a sportsman, enjoying both the physical and mental challenge of athletic and outdoor activity. He was always ready for an adventure, even if he was not always quite prepared. Avid snow skiers, Harry and Inger spent many Winter Holidays with their five children traveling north to ski in Vermont, living quite snuggly 7 people in a 15 foot pull trailer. Beginning in 1954, Harry and his extended family found their beloved “Pincus Cottage” at 87th Street, Virginia Beach and there became a true and loyal friends and neighbors to the North End community. At the Beach, he loved to spend time with his family and friends sunbathing, dancing, swimming, body surfing, surfing, “butt busting” (87th St. name for “skim boarding”), playing ping pong, horse shoes and, most of all, “volleyball.” It was at the north end of Virginia Beach that Harry first got his taste for and developed his love of, as well as talent for, volleyball. In 1962, after severely injuring his back playing this new found sport, Harry realized he had found his passion and wanted to find a way to help the sport grow. He spent his convalescence founding and organizing the Tidewater Volleyball Association and served as its president for its first 18 years. Harry became the driving force and advocate to make volleyball a high school sport in both Virginia Beach and Norfolk, and he was the first college volleyball coach at Norfolk State University. He and his great life-long friend, Monroe Farmer, introduced Two-Man Beach Volley to Virginia Beach and for over 42 years Harry played, coached, officiated, and promoted Volleyball locally, nationally and internationally with unique and exceptional success. National and International competitions from the 80’s to 2001 led to 12 National and 5 World Volleyball Championships. From 1979 to 2001 he led Goodwill Tours to China, Israel, the United Kingdom, South America, Western and Eastern Europe.

Other than Volleyball, Harry’s greatest love and legacy was family and friends. Harry is survived by his former wife and friend of 65 years, Inger Bratland Pincus, and his sister, Jane Pincus Silverstein of Charleston, W.Va., along with her two daughters, Margaret “Peggy” Silverstein O’Connell, of Sparta, N.J., and Elizabeth Leigh Sult and husband, Rob Sult of San Antonio, Texas. Also surviving Harry are his five children and eight grandchildren: Paul B. Pincus and Kjersti Gjertsen of Tromso, Norway, and children, Hanna Gjertsen Pincus, Sigrid Pincus Gjertsen and Nora Pincus Gjertsen; Finn D. Pincus of Salem, Va.; Alex H. Pincus and Susan K. Pincus of Norfolk, and children, Erin E. Pincus, David A. Pincus and Anna- Britta Pincus; Ingeresa Pincus Friedman and Brian N. Friedman of Norfolk, and children Neal M. Friedman and Cole B. Friedman: and Kari E. Pincus of Norfolk. In 1996, Harry was remarried to Iris Robinson of Connecticut (who predeceased him) and he gained more loving family. Children, Jimmy Robinson and Nancy Rogers with their spouses Amy and Chris, three grandchildren, Anna Rogers, Ben Rogers and Marissa Robinson, and one great-grandchild, Henry Robinson. Whether he was Coach, Uncle Harry, Uncle Bubber, Dad, Poppy, Farfar, Bubba or simply Harry, he was good and true, caring, loving and dedicated. “There’s nothing like family” he would say.

A memorial service to celebrate Harry’s life and memory was held at Ohef Sholom Temple.

Memorial donations to the Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.

Online condolences may be offered to the family through www.hdoliver.com.