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Lawrence A. Isdaner, 71, a retired managing partner of Isdaner & Co., a firm of certified public accountants, and cofounder of Allegiance Bank of North America, died Dec. 26.
He was born in Philadelphia and raised in Wynnefield in a close neighborhood where he made many lifelong friends, according to his son, Bart Isdaner.
A graduate of Overbrook High School, Isdaner earned a bachelor's degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. After serving for two years in the Army, he worked for several accounting firms. In the 1960s he and his father, Irving Isdaner, founded their own firm.
"He was a terrific businessman, an entrepreneur who was caring, compassionate and a confidant to his clients," said his son Scott Isdaner, who now runs the firm. "Dad was always interested in banking, and served as a special advisor to United Valley Bank. After that, he fulfilled his dream of being a banker with the opening of Allegiance Bank in Bala Cynwyd in 1999.
"The bank is very service-oriented, even comfortable, with cashiers sitting at desks, not behind glass," said Bart Isdaner. "It is patterned on my father's business philosophy of making every person he met feel important."
Isdaner met his wife of 48 years, Audrey, after a friend called him and said: "I just went out with the woman you're going to marry."
Of her husband, Audrey Isdaner said: "He gave me a good trip through life and opened my eyes. He was always up. Every day was a new day, a new challenge. He was bright, had a wonderful sense of humor, and never said anything bad about anybody."
In 1978, Isdaner was diagnosed with laryngeal cancer, and thus had his larynx removed. He spoke with a voice box.
"His battle with cancer went on, but it never stopped him and he continued to always live life - and he never complained once," said Scott Isdaner.
The Isdaner sons recalled their father as a man who was always available and accessible, even with his intense involvement in the business world. Bart Isdaner played tennis with him; his brother Scott played golf with him.
To his six grandsons, ages 11 to 18, "he was one of their buddies; and they were one of his passions," said Bart Isdaner.
"They called him Larry. He and my mother would take them on trips. A favorite for the kids was the Pop Warner Super Bowl at Disney World. My father was active in the organization and served on the national board."
Isdaner was a leader and active member of Golden Slipper Charities, serving as president in 1977 and 1978. He received the group's Horatio Alger Award in 1987.
Besides sports, Isdaner enjoyed traveling with his wife; the two made many trips to Asia.
The last trip he made was his first trip to Israel this past summer with 14 members of the family for the Bar Mitzvah of his grandson, Eric.
"Though my dad was in a continual physical decline, he had a spectacular week seeing and doing everything the family did," said Scott Isdaner. "That's what he wanted to do on the trip and did throughout life, and that's what he wanted all of us to continue to do - celebrate life."
Isdaner is also survived by a sister, Dolores Aronson.