Rifkin, Irving J..

Biography

k-Rifkin, Irving J. b. March 4, 1917, Brooklyn, New York; Russian American; Jewish; father Julius M. Rifkin June 1886 Minsk, Russia-1973), mother Clara Schneider (1888- 1972); Attended the City College of New York; ROTC 1935-37; Single; Student; CP 1936; Received Passport# 539794 on May 25, 1938 which listed his address as 3916 Laurel Avenue, Brooklyn, New York; Sailed July 6, 1938 aboard the Queen Mary; Arrived in Spain on July 16, 1938, over the Pyrenees, to Albacete July 22, 1938; Served with the XV BDE, Lincoln-Washington BN, Co. 3; Rank Soldado; Believed captured and executed on September 7, 1938 in the Sierra Caballs. USDDA includes sworn statement by Gerald Cook, William G. Wheeler and Herman Klein:
“We. The undersigned certify that the men named below were members of the third company of the Lincoln Battalion in Spain and were captured by the Franco forces on the 7th day of September, 1938, on the sector of Corbera. We know these facts to be true as we witnessed the entire affair, having been members of the same unit and barely escaping ourselves after having been completely surrounded. These men are: Irving Rifkin, James Pearce, Jack Arnold, Pat Garafalo, Wilbur Wheeler, Thomas Hardy, Sam Grossner, William Miller, Leonard Holtzclaw.”
Rifkin’s family was not aware he was going to Spain, They learned he was in Spain after receiving a letter dated July 14, 1938, His last letter to his family was dated Aug 24, 1938; State Department records note disappeared on September 21, 1938.
Siblings: brothers Charles Sideny Rifkin (1910-1989), Victor S. Rifkin (1918-2014), sister Florence Rifkin (1914-2011).
Sources: Scope of Soviet Activity; Figueres List; Pay; RGASPI Fond 545, Opis 6, Delo 971, ll. 55a-56; USSDA 2:0865, 59:0211; L-W Tree Ancestry. Code A
Photograph: Irving Rifkin, Passport Photograph, 1938.