Arthur Goldstein, a former federal prosecutor and Huntington Town attorney who helped lead local efforts to curb drug abuse, died Monday after a lengthy illness at Huntington Hospital. He was 79.
He met his wife, Judith, on Valetine's Day in 1953. The two were set up a blind date in Syracuse by mutual friends.
"I had a very handsome date," she recalled. "We were pretty sure from the start, and we were right."
The couple, who moved to Huntington in 1958, celebrated their 56th wedding anniversary on March 11.
After law school, Goldstein joined the U.S. Department of Justice in New York. Assigned to an organized crime task force, he helped prosecute mobsters and was involved in a major upstate raid in 1957, the family said.
Two years later, he went into private practice, specializing in civil litigation, zoning and real estate. He became Huntington Town attorney in 1968, a position he held for another two years.
He went on to launch his own law firm, now Goldstein, Rubinton, Goldstein & DiFazio, where he worked until his death.
Goldstein was committed to bettering his community, family members and co-workers said.
"My dad touched many people's lives, and he left this world an appreciably better place," said his son, Ronald Goldstein, of Huntington, a lawyer at the firm his father started. "Dad was not only a family man; he was also a visionary."
In the 1960s, Arthur Goldstein served as chairman of the Huntington Narcotics Guidance Council, which worked to tackle a growing problem of youth drug abuse. He also sat on the boards of the Huntington YMCA and Gurwin Jewish Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Commack, a center he helped create in 1988, his son said.
Russ DiFazio, another lawyer at the firm, said Goldstein was always helping people but seldom told anyone about his good deeds. "He was a wonderful, generous and philanthropic man," DiFazio said.
Beside his wife and son, he is survived by his daughter, Cynthia Cohen, of Fairfax, Va.; and his brother, Leonard Goldstein, of Falls Church, Va. The funeral and burial were Tuesday.