Obituaries » Samuel Warner Halper
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December 8, 1928 - January 31, 2020
Los Angeles lost respected attorney and community leader, Samuel Warner Halper, on January 31, 2020. Known by family and friends as Sam, he was beloved for his gentle demeanor, inquisitive mind, and sharp wit.
Sam was born December 8, 1928, to Louis Juda Halper and Sadie Warner Halper, sister to the well-known Warner brothers. His father worked at Warner Bros. Pictures, and he grew up in Beverly Hills amid the burgeoning entertainment industry. He and his sister, Evelyn, had a childhood filled with movie stars and gala premieres, yet he chose to pursue a career in law.
Sam first attended the University of California Berkeley before transferring to University of California, Los Angeles, majoring in economics and pre-law. While a UCLA student, he was set up on a blind date with Sylvia Ruth Bauman. Sam and Ruth fell in love and were married eight months later in 1950. Not long after, the Korean War interfered with Sam’s intended attendance at UCLA School of Law.
Having been a member of ROTC while at UCLA, he joined the United States Army Infantry as a Second Lieutenant and served in Japan and Korea. Following his service, Sam returned to UCLA School of Law, where he was elected to class president for his senior year. During those years, he and Ruth welcomed their first child, William Benton Halper in 1953. A few years later, they settled in Westwood, where their second son, Louis Ryan Halper, was born in 1957.
Early in his law career, Sam was a partner at the firm Bartman, Braun and Halper. Some years later, Sam opened his own firm, providing corporate and estate services for many leading Los Angeles businesses and families.
Sam was a lifelong member of Wilshire Boulevard Temple. He was also active in several non-profit organizations including Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where Sam served on the Board of Governors. He was especially proud of his early and ongoing support of Operation Gratitude, which has provided more than 2.5 million care packages to service men and women around the world. Even in his last few years, Sam worked to fulfill the charitable wishes of a friend by establishing the Carol Moss Foundation. Serving as its President and later Treasurer, he guided the Foundation’s vision of providing grants to support veterans’ and animal causes.
Sam’s family and broad circle of dear friends will remember him for his generosity, ever-present warmth, and enduring, offbeat humor. He is survived by his beloved wife of 69 years, Ruth; their sons Bill (Joyce) and Louis (Diana); their seven treasured grandchildren, Russell, Amanda (Oscar), Joanna, Rachel (Garin), Mollie, Darby and Ryan; and two great-grandchildren, Jonah and Oscar. The wisdom, kindness, and love he has shown his entire extended family is only exceeded by their love for him.
Memorial services will be held at 10 am on Tuesday, February 4th, 2020 at Hillside Memorial Park, 6001 W. Centinela Ave., Los Angeles. Donations, in lieu of flowers, can be made to Operation Gratitude (operationgratitude.com).