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Mount Sinai Obituaries and Services » Paul M. Saben
April 5, 1940 - June 9, 2020
Paul Saben Obituary
Paul Martin Saben was born on April 5, 1940 in New York, New York. He lived most of his life in Southern California and passed away on June 9, 2020 in Woodland Hills, CA.
Paul was actually born “baby Saperstein.” Very shortly thereafter, his father Benjamin changed the family name to Saben taking the “Sa” from Saperstein and the “ben” from his first name. Paul spent the first six years of his life in The Bronx before moving to Alhambra, CA in 1946. He grew up in California with his parents, Benjamin and Celia Saben, and his three younger siblings, Judi Hying, and Laurence and Steven Saben. After Paul tragically lost his mother, his father married Bea Grossman when Paul was 16, and Bea’s son Bob Grossman joined the family as well.
Paul attended Alhambra High School until he transferred to the newly built San Gabriel High School during 11th grade. He and his family moved to San Gabriel, where he lived until he went to college. He received the California State Scholarship, which enabled him to attend Occidental College in Eagle Rock where he majored in physics.
Paul spent 10 years working as an aerospace engineer at Rockwell Autonetics in Anaheim where he very proudly worked on projects to help send man to the moon. While at Rockwell Autonetics, Paul was offered the opportunity to go back to school and earn his MBA in finance from UCLA. He then switched to the strategic planning department where he discovered his passion – planning and analysis. Paul then spent the next 20 years working for various companies in the real estate industry until he decided that he could do just as well for himself as working for somebody else. He then formed his own real estate consulting business which focused primarily on providing clean, safe, and affordable housing to low-income residents in Los Angeles. He continued this career path for the rest of his life.
In the Summer after his first year of college, Paul attended an award ceremony where his sister Judi was receiving the “Outstanding Jewish Student” award for her high school. At the same ceremony, Barbara Jeanne Malsberg was receiving the same award from her own high school. When Barbara was on stage, Paul saw her for the first time and it was love at first sight. It took a little more convincing for Barbara before she felt the same. But Paul was motivated and commenced four years of courtship, including outings to Catalina, Fourth of July at the Rose Bowl, concerts, theater performances, and many other wonderful experiences which Barbara still fondly remembers.
Paul and “Bobbie” were married on December 22, 1963 at the Altadena Country Club. They honeymooned in the city that soon became their favorite vacation spot – Las Vegas. They stayed at the Stardust in the cheapest room they could find at $6 per night. They came to Vegas with $40 and left with $1.
Paul and Bobbie started their family soon after their honeymoon. Their first daughter, Cari, was born in 1965, and their second daughter, Dorie, was born in 1970. Those who knew Paul know that to him, family was everything. He was a devoted father and husband. Over the years his family grew. Paul and Bobbie became foster parents. Good friends like Mary became honorary family members. His children’s good friends, like JinHee, Samantha, and Akiko, became honorary family members. Paul and Bobbie hosted foreign exchange students who stayed in touch long after returning home. And the list goes on and on.
And as time went on, Paul’s family continued to grow. He gained two son-in-laws when his daughter Dorie married William Liang in 1995, and his daughter Cari married Lyle Flint in 2001. His greatest triumph, however, came with the birth of his grandchildren. Sydney Liang was born in 2003 and Amanda Liang was born in 2008. From then on Paul had a new title which he treasured: Zaidi. Paul absolutely adored his grandchildren and he never tired of doting on them.
Paul had hobbies and loved to collect (he has amazing coin, stamp, book, and paperweight collections), but his social life revolved around family. Family gatherings were a common occurrence and took place with the slightest of excuses. There were Saben family gatherings as well as get-togethers with Bobbie’s side of the family (sister and brother-in-law Marsha and Dennis, and nieces Lana, Andrea, and Erica). All major holidays were spent with family. All vacations were family vacations. He went on vacations with his children and grandchildren and also with Bobbie’s father (Jack Malsberg) and uncle (Edward “Lolly” Malsberg). And leisure time was commonly spent playing games with family, where he loved to teach and mentor everyone on how to play and how to play well. He taught his daughters how to play bridge, and he taught everyone, including his grandchildren and many honorary family members, how to play poker (Anaconda anyone?).
Paul also had a second family – the Venice Family Clinic. In 1976 Paul was asked to join the Board of Directors as Treasurer for a small free medical clinic located in Venice. This began Paul’s life-long commitment to the clinic that continued until the day he died. During his involvement with the clinic, which included 17 years as Treasurer, two years as President of the Board, and many years chairing various finance committees, the clinic has grown into one of the largest free health clinics in the country. Paul was instrumental in the growth of the Venice Family clinic, instituting strategic and long-term planning and training and mentoring other Board members. His involvement contributed to the financial stability of the clinic that will continue long into the future. If you would like to donate to Paul’s second love in his honor, go to https://venicefamilyclinic.org/donate/.
Paul will be remembered most for his unbelievably optimistic outlook on life. He never had a bad word to say about anything or anyone. He was the least judgmental person you could ever meet. His granddaughter Amanda described him as “intelligent, happy, optimistic, and loved to talk.” His older granddaughter Sydney added, “he was a genuinely happy person who had so much love to give.”
Paul was laid to rest on June 29, 2020 at Mt. Sinai in Simi Valley with his immediate family members present.