Solomon Gad was born Suleman Nisan Gad in Herat, Afghanistan,
in 1924, to parents Nisan and Leah Kort. Solomon was one of fourteen children
and, from an early age, learned discipline from a stern but forgiving father.
Solomon was an orthodox Jew and his life’s focus was a devotion to G-d.
Solomon moved away from his family’s home at the young age
of 14 to start a business partnership with his older brother David. During
these early and formative years, Solomon travelled extensively and learned
about the business world first hand. After four years of travel and business,
at the age of 18, he married Shoshana Gul, daughter of Mosa and Ester Gul. Solomon
and Shoshana were introduced to one another by close friend Simon Avram.
Solomon and Shoshana’s first child, Osnat, was born in 1946,
in Peshawar, a town which was under British authority (later the region became
known as Pakistan). Solomon’s business moved the family to Bombay, India, were
daughter Zipora was born. Upon Israel’s birth as a nation, Solomon moved his
family, mother Leah and numerous siblings and cousins to Tel Aviv. Shortly
after arriving in Israel, his third child Ruth was born.
Solomon and brother David’s carpet and dry goods trading
business brought him back to Afghanistan where he continued to be involved with
local Jewish community leaders. The financial success of the business offered
his family comfortable living standards in the newly created Israeli nation.
Solomon left Afghanistan in 1957 and joined his family in Israel and within a
short time, after the birth of twin daughters, Ahuva and Dalia, immigrated with
the entire family to the United States, where children Liza and Isaac were
Continuing the business tradition, Solomon formed a company
called Amerind with his bothers David and Naftali which concentrated on
diamonds, precious and semi-precious stones. Much like the earlier business,
Amerind was a financial success.
Over the years Solomon remained devoted to G-d and to his
roots in the Jewish Afghan community. He created the Afghan Jewish Foundation,
a charitable organization dedicated to supporting yeshivas and the less
privileged throughout the world. He readily embraced the leadership role and
handled the responsibilities for the growing Jewish-Afghan community in the
United States. He was the pioneer and organizer of the Anshe Shalom Syngogue in
Jamica Estates, New York, making sure the young Afghan community had a place to
pray and remember their heritage.
Solomon watched his family flourish and grow until his
passing in 2007. Solomon’s legacy is survived by his 7 children, 13
grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren, all of whom are strong branches on the
Jewish-Afghan tree of life. Solomon’s devotion to G-d, along with his passion
for community and charity, is continued to this day through the Afghan Jewish
Foundation’s educational and heritage programs for the descendents of the Jews