We are deeply saddened by the loss of a dear friend and leader of the Bethlehem Association. Born in Chamelecon, Honduras, and raised in Bethlehem, Palestine, Domingo Handal was a loving and caring husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend. He met the instant love of his life, Linda, and they married at the Church of Nativity in Bethlehem, or as he referred to it, Jesus's Town. While trading imports and exports, he, Linda, and their growing family lived and traveled in Kuwait, Iraq, and Jordan. Each of their children was born in a different country. His business eventually led him to New York City, and finally to Jersey City, NJ where he established a deli and neighborhood ice cream parlor, the latter of which became a permanent fixture on Central Avenue for more than 40 years.
Domingo's passion and commitment to community are perhaps best exemplified through his integral roles as a founding member and leader of two causes very near and dear to his heart-- Jersey City, Central Avenue Special Improvement District, and the Bethlehem Association. In Jersey City he was known as the "Godfather of Central Avenue" and "Baba" to many, earning his seat as a community legend. Together, Domingo and Linda devoted over 30 years on the board of the Bethlehem Association, a charitable organization that supports the communities of Bethlehem.
He was generous, mischievously quick-witted, funny, and always ready for a dance-off or a push-up contest. His integrity was unshakable, and while he had much to boast about, he never once indulged. He and Linda instilled these traits in their children and grandchildren -- there is not one of his descendants that can say they weren't shaped, in one way or another, by his and Linda's guidance and love. For those that were there to shape you, never truly leave you.
Domingo will forever be remembered by his five devoted children, Vida and her husband Samir Handal, Vera and her husband Nassib Faris, Florence and her husband Pierre Fersa, David and his wife Michelle Handal, and Christine Handal; 13 loving grandchildren, Sanielle, Ramzi, John, Renee, Nicole, Kristina, Ramie, Alex, Andre, Gabriella, Anthony, Andrew, Michael; and his five great-granddaughters, Alia, Maggie, Loretta, Theodora, and Nora. He is now reunited in heaven with his beloved wife, Linda, and his siblings Kamal and Shafique. Domingo is survived by his siblings, George, Elaine, and Olga.
He always believed in leaving something better than you found it, and that is exactly what he did.
To honor Domingo and Linda's passion and hard work within the Bethlehem Association, in lieu of flowers please consider a gift to:
PO Box 1111
Media, PA 19063
Please make a check to Bethlehem Association Scholarship Fund. In the memo line of the check please write "memory of Domingo Handal."