Eli Dermer

Eli Dermer, Bucharest, Romania, 1947

Eli Dermer was the uncle of Emanu’El member Micha Menczer.

Eli Dermer was the youngest child of Moshe Dermer and Shayndel Dermer. He was born around 1915 in Bukovina province of Austria (now part of Romania) in a shtetl, Suceava, near the city of Chernovitz. 

After graduating from university Eli became engineer working in Bucarest Romania. He avoided deportation during the Shoah and sent assistance to his sister Regina Menczer and other members of the Dermer family who had been  deported to Bershad camp in the Ukraine in November/December 1941 where they remained until the spring of 1944.

Eli married Virginia Chelarescu in 1949 and continued to work as an engineer in Bucarest. He considered emigration to Canada in the early 1950’s to join his sister Regina Menczer and brothers Sydney and Simon Dermer in Ottawa however it was difficult during this time for an engineer to emigrate from Romania which was now under communist rule. After years of effort by his family in Canada Eli and Virginia were able to come to Canada in 1964. They settled in Montreal where Eli worked as an engineer and Virginia as a dressmaker.

Eli and Virginia did not have any children, however they were close to their nephews and nieces. They visited Ottawa frequently where Regina and Micha Menczer lived. Eli passed away in the fall of 1981. Virginia returned to Romania soon after and died there in the spring of 1982. 

Eli had a great influence on Micha and his memory is being honoured through inscription on the Zachor wall in the Jewish cemetery in Victoria. 

December 6, 2022

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