By Cleve Bryan
CAMDEN, NJ (CBS) – Camden children playing and learning is what it was all about for Lewis Katz, whose name is now on a school and Boys and Girls Club on the same block where he grew up.
“He wanted to give back to his roots,” says Ronald Dubrow, the president of the Camden County Boys and Girls Club and a longtime friend of Katz and Susan Asbell.
Katz died this weekend flying home with friends and colleagues from a fundraiser for education. Also inside the plane were Susan Asbell, who helped start the Boys and Girls Club of Camden County, and Marcy Dalsey, who was Board President for the Katz Academy.
“They had a monumental impact on our students here,” says Principal Tishara Landi.
She also says Marcy Dalsey was passionate about exposing kids to culture in addition to academics.
“She was the driving force behind it, she was our energy, our Energizer Bunny, behind the scenes making sure that everything was being done.”
Another woman with the reputation for moving mountains to help children was Susan Asbell.
“If Susan was your friend, there is nothing you could ask her for that she wouldn’t do. She was the ultimate friend. At the Boys and Girls Club when we needed to get something done, go to Susan.”
As people reflect on the lives of Lewis Katz and Susan Asbell, one thing that will remain part of their legacy is teaching the life-saving skill swimming. Hundreds, if not thousands, of Camden children learned to swim from the Boys and Girls Club.
“They’re not pictures, they’re not names – they were people who we see on a daily basis, and they’ve been involved in our program,” says Superintendent of Camden’s charter school network Joseph Conway.