Former Rockville Centre Rabbi Dr. Barry Dov Schwartz worked alongside a Nazi hunter. He marched for Civil Rights in Washington, D.C. He served as a chaplain during the Vietnam War. These stories and many more of his exciting adventures and experiences are chronicled in his new book, “A Man of Spirit: A Rabbi Navigates a Half-Century of Sweeping Change,” which was released on Jan. 25.
“I said to myself, it’s a good time now that I’m retired that I just try to put something together of all the adventurous things that I experienced during my lifetime,” Schwartz said, “especially my years during Vietnam and 37 years in one congregation on Long Island, and that was the motive.”
Those 37 years were spent at Temple B’nai Shalom, now Congregation B’nai Sholom-Beth David, in Rockville Centre. Schwartz, 81, who now lives in North Woodmere, grew up in Boston and went on to study at Boston Latin School, Boston University, Columbia University, Hebrew Teachers College, Hebrew University and the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York.
When he was a student in Boston, he traveled to Washington, D.C. to join the march for civil rights on Aug, 28, 1963, at the urging of his mother, and he said his parents instilled in him the importance of acceptance.