Obituaries: January, 24th 2024
Dr. Harold Ceitlin

Dr. Harold Ceitlin

Dr. Harold Lee Ceitlin, 76, passed away on Jan. 12, 2024, in Dallas surrounded by his family. His strength, courage and positivity will forever be an inspiration.

For 44 years, Dr. Ceitlin’s dental practice served generations in Birmingham and across Alabama. His smile and comforting manner put people at ease. He volunteered in Jerusalem and in Cuba.

Dr. Ceitlin’s greatest love was his family. He is survived by his wife Julie (née Lilienthal) of over 48 years; his children Jay (Kari) Ceitlin, Jill (Russin) Royal; grandchildren Drew, Lev and Kol Ceitlin and Havi and Somi Royal, all of Dallas. His warmth, kindness and sense of humor will live on through loving sisters Bonita Nickol of Little Rock and Margaret Biller of Memphis and his sister-in-law Sally Dunkley of Selma. Also important to him were nephews and nieces Gary (Kaylin) Nickol, Julie (Steve) Felsen, Caroline Bernstein, Jonathan Biller, Daniel (Tara) Biller, Amy (Alexis) Vaughn along with all of their children.

Dr. Ceitlin was preceded in death by his parents, Eddie and Sophie Ceitlin, along with brothers-in-law and dear friends Leslie Lilienthal, Stephen Biller and Dr. Sam Nickol.

Born on March 6, 1947, Dr. Ceitlin graduated from Shades Valley High School in 1965 and entered Tulane University. He received a bachelor’s degree from Birmingham Southern and then a Doctor of Dental Medicine from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, graduating in 1973 before founding his private practice.

Dr. Ceitlin’s network included his golf group at Pinetree Country Club and a group of Zeta Beta Tau college buddies.

He was at Legion Field when Bear Bryant parted the clouds so the sun could shine on the Tide. His passions included art, the stock market and politics. Dr. Ceitlin loved music with diverse tastes. He shared a joy for travel with his family.

Dr Ceitlin’s favorite destination was Israel, where he visited many times and championed its vital role.

He was a member of the American Dental Association, Alabama Dental Association, Birmingham District Dental Society and the Academy of General Dentistry as well as numerous local organizations such as the Jewish Community Center, Temple Beth-El, Israel Bonds and United Ability.

A graveside service was held Jan. 15 at Elmwood Cemetery in Birmingham followed by a memorial service at Temple Beth-El.

The family asks that contributions be made in Dr. Ceitlin’s memory to the Temple Beth-El Ceitlin Family Fund; Buz-A-Bus Transportation by Collat Jewish Family Services; or Friends of the Israel Defense Forces.

Murray Colton

Murray Colton

Murray Fred Colton, age 79, passed away peacefully on Jan. 16, 2024, after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer. Murray was preceded in death by his parents, Evelyn and Jules Colton. He is survived by his loving wife, Diane; sister, Iris (Dennis) Topletz; sisters-in-law, Marla (Joe) Hill and Pamela Bothwell; nephews, Lane (Lupe) Topletz, Casey (Jade) Topletz; niece, Wendy Topletz; and great-nieces and one great-nephew. 

Murray was born May 2, 1944, in Chicago and moved to Dallas as a young child. He graduated from Hillcrest High School; he earned a bachelor’s degree at The University of Texas at Austin and an MBA at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. He also served in the National Guard.

He was a passionate sports fan, especially of the Texas Longhorns and Texas Rangers. He was a CPA by profession and exemplified both integrity and character in his work. He shared numerous stories and memories with others, often repeating the stories several times.

Murray will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

A graveside funeral service was held at Hillcrest Memorial Park on Jan. 18, with Rabbi Debra Robbins and Cantor Vicki Glikin of Temple Emanu El officiating. Honorary pallbearers were Joe Hill, Lane Topletz, Casey Topletz, Adam Speckman, Ryan Speckman and Gary Solka.

A reception followed in Tobian auditorium at Temple Emanu-El. Shiva minyan took place at the home of Iris and Dennis Topletz.

To honor Murray, a memorial contribution can be made to the charity of your choice.

Leon Lampert

Leon Lampert

Leon Lampert, 93, beloved husband, father, grandfather and brother, passed away Dec. 30, 2023, in Dallas.

Leon was born in San Antonio to Abraham and Elsa Lampert on Sept. 14, 1930. Leon became an avid tennis player in junior high school, teaching himself to play by hitting at the public tennis courts near his home. He attended Brackenridge High School, where he solidified his passion for tennis by winning City Singles at the age of 16 and winning the Texas High School State Championship in Doubles at 17.

Leon was a second lieutenant commissioned as an engineer in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a military terrain analyst, serving stateside during the Korean War.

Leon attended The University of Texas at Austin, where he received a Bachelor of Science in geology in 1951 and a Master of Arts in geology in 1953. Leon was a member of the Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity. Leon met his future wife, Barbara Oster, in the summer before his sophomore year at UT and Barbara’s freshman year at UT. They met when Leon traveled to Galveston with fraternity brothers for a trip to the beach. Barbara was visiting grandparents in Galveston and Leon spotted her on the beach. He said to his friend who also knew Barbara, “I want to meet her.” They dated that summer and when Barbara attended UT in the fall, they continued to date throughout college. After Leon completed his master’s degree and Barbara graduated with a Bachelor of Music, they married in 1953 in Dallas. Leon and Barbara lived in Dallas, Midland, then back to Dallas. Leon spent his career as a petroleum exploration geologist, working for Dalport Oil Corporation as vice president and head of exploration from 1958 to 1993. While at Dalport, he discovered oil fields in Texas and New Mexico. In 1969, he discovered a wildcat oil field in Chaves County, New Mexico, which was named after him, the Double L Queen Field.

Leon and Barbara had three children during these years, Gail, Wayne and Ellen. In 1964 they moved their family to Corpus Christi, where he continued to work for Dalport. Leon also resumed his passion for tennis by competing in many tournaments in Corpus Christi and around Texas from his 30s until his late 60s. Leon was ranked 10th-12th in Texas in Open Singles in his age brackets during those years.

Leon was very active in Jewish organizations. At B’nai Israel Synagogue in Corpus Christi, he was vice president and a board member for 15 years. He was president of B’nai B’rith twice. He was co-chairman of the National Conference of Christians and Jews in Corpus Christi.

In 1995, Leon and Barbara moved back to Dallas to be close to Gail and her husband and two children, who were living in Dallas at that time. They joined and participated actively in the congregations of Shearith Israel Synagogue and Kehillat Chaverim in Dallas. Throughout Leon’s life, he regularly attended religious services each week; Leon and Barbara kept a kosher home. He was a Biblical scholar and studied Torah and ancient Israelite societies.

Leon loved the outdoors, traveling, mountain scenery, hiking, camping, skiing and watching Texas Longhorn sports with Barbara. He jogged two miles every day for decades, staying fit for his tennis tournaments. He took trips to Israel to visit his relatives.

Leon was happiest when he was with his wife, children and grandchildren. He was a loyal, loving husband to Barbara for 70 years. He was a playful grandfather to his seven grandchildren. Leon was a kid at heart and always had a youthful spirit, up until the end of his life. His memory will be cherished by all who knew him.

He is survived by his adoring wife, Barbara; his children, Gail (David) Greenberg, Wayne (Pninit) Lampert, Ellen Lampert Pollock; and grandchildren, Lara (Charles) Krebs, Elizabeth Greenberg, Ethan Pollock, Cameron Pollock, William Pollock, Dalia Lampert and Deena Lampert. He was predeceased by his parents, Abraham and Elsa Lampert, and brother, Dr. Morris Lampert.

The funeral was held Jan. 2 at Sparkman Hillcrest Cemetery in Dallas.

Contributions may be made to Congregation Shearith Israel, Kehillat Chaverim or Friends of the Israel Defense Forces.

Leave a Reply