Stanley Chera made his name as a titan of the New York real estate scene, but his everlasting legacy will be the grants and donations he made with a generous hand, particularly to the Jewish community. He battled COVID-19 for more than a month before passing away on April 11.

From humble roots in Brooklyn, N.Y., in a Syrian Jewish family, Chera partnered with his father in his retail store, expanding and buying more properties as business grew.

With a strong sense of market volatility and an ability to forecast trends, Chera began buying in Manhattan and watched his empire explode into the stratosphere. He developed close relationships with other tycoons, including real estate magnate Donald J. Trump, now President Trump.

Despite his success, Chera remained true to his roots as a committed member of the Sephardic communities in Brooklyn and in Deal, N.J., home to a large number of Syrian Jews. He was a co-founder of the nonprofit Sephardic Community Center in Brooklyn and donated generously to numerous Jewish causes. His loss stirred those he touched over the years, including the president.

Popular singer Yaakov Shwekey, who co-founded the Special Children’s Center, paid an emotional tribute to Chera during a live-streamed concert dedicated in his memory to more than 50,000 people watching in real time. He recalled how Chera could always be relied on for moral and financial support, and would extend himself to help someone else. Shwekey told of a time when a sick child had a dream to visit the White House to meet the president; it took one phone call to Chera to make it happen.

He is survived by his wife, Frieda (“Cookie”), and their three sons, Richard Chera, Haim Chera and Isaac Chera, who are also employed in the business.

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