René Weidenfeld

Obituary of René Weidenfeld

René Weidenfeld, a spirit whose life journey was marked by resiliency and laughter passed away peacefully on Friday, March 8, 2024. Born in Grenoble, France, René's early years in the Alsace region were shadowed by the turmoil of wartime Europe. Despite these formidable challenges, his spirit remained unbroken, a testament to his resilience and fortitude.

As a young child, René's family fled Strasbourg during the  German occupation of Alsace. They found refuge in the home of Sylvain Doumazet in Brantome, an idyllic town that René remembered fondly. One of his happiest meetings occurred in 2011 with Mr. Doumazet’s daughter in Brantome with whom he had shared a home nearly 70 years earlier. René's advocacy for Israel and Holocaust survivors was deeply rooted in his own harrowing experiences as a child.

Thanks to the unwavering support of his Uncle Simon, René, alongside his sister, mother, and grandmother, embarked on a journey aboard the SS Ile de France, seeking refuge and a fresh start. The family settled in the Bronx, where René grew up.

In 1958, a dance at Hunter College became the setting of a fateful encounter with the love of his life, leading to a devoted marriage on June 25, 1960. René's commitment to his country was exemplified by his service in the United States Army Reserves, from which he was honorably discharged in 1965.

A graduate of Taft High School, René's intellectual curiosity and ambition led him to New York University, where he earned a Bachelor's degree in finance. His college years were also a period of practical experience as René interned at Bunge Corp. His career path saw him flourish as a grain trader and Vice President at Bunge before founding his own successful venture, RW Brokerage, on Wall Street.

René made a significant career transition later in life as an investigative accountant for the state of New Jersey. He valued his work, received many accolades, and made many good friends.

René Had many interests and hobbies. He loved working with his model railroad, which appealed to his meticulous nature He had a profound appreciation for French cuisine, especially crêpes, which he often made on weekends, and chocolate mousse.

An aficionado of classic cars, René took pride in his TR3, even if he couldn’t put it back together! René's love for music continued through his last days.

Known for his jovial spirit, René had the rare gift of lighting up any room with laughter. His compassion extended to all animals, demonstrated by his unwavering support for rescue organizations, embodying his love for animals, especially cats, influenced by his wife's fondness for them.

He reveled in being the center of attention, and his love for his family and friends was palpable. Whether telling stories, sharing laughter, or offering advice, he was at his happiest surrounded by his loved ones.

René Weidenfeld is lovingly remembered by his family, who survive him. His devoted wife of 63 years, Elinor Weidenfeld, remains a testament to their love. His legacy continues through his three children: Andrea Bitz and her fiancé, Bill Schwartz; Dan Weidenfeld and his wife, Carole; Jason Weidenfeld and his wife, Virginia. His life was further enriched by five grandchildren, Brandon, Spencer, Alex, Michael, and Hayden, who brought immense joy and pride to his journey.

René was predeceased by his beloved sister, Ginette David, in 2020.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.


Final Resting Place

Sunday, March 10, 2024
Temple Sholom Cemetery
100 Chimney Roack Road
Bridgewater, New Jersey, United States

Funeral Service

10:00 am
Sunday, March 10, 2024
Higgins Home for Funerals
752 Mountain Blvd.
Watchung, New Jersey, United States


Location: Bruno’s Bistro Address: 116 Mountain Blvd. Ext., Warren, NJ 07059 Timing: Immediately following the interment - Approximately 12:45 pm
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