Jewish Ozzies' Inter.Net
The electronic voice of the Australian Jewish Community

Letters from Jewish Australia 

In Memory of Joe Sandow Z”L 

31st October 2002 

Joe Sandow, who died on Saturday 26th October, 2002, was known throughout Australia as “Joe the Gadget Man”. 

Joe was a salesman extraordinaire, who came here from England 53 years ago with his wife and three little girls. At a time when kitchens were generally furnished with little more than cutlery, choppers and saucepans, Joe travelled around the country demonstrating gadgets, such as potato peelers. People needed to be shown how to use these inventions. Joe would work in department stores and country markets where his voice was an enormous asset. His quick wit drew and entertained the crowds and people paid in cash. 

Within days of his arrival in Sydney Joe found work at Nock and Kirbys, a large hardware store in the city. He stayed with this company for many years doing daily gadget demonstrations and, with the advent of television, began appearing regularly in the Midday Show on Channel 9. In those early days the programs went straight to air. Now Joe displayed a talent for making everything work live on camera. He entertained everyone including the camera crew. Joe’s name appears in the Guiness Book of Records as having the longest running TV programme. 

As recently as last week he was still being recognised by visitors to the Montefiore Home. His cheeky brand of humour endeared him to everyone who had the privilege to know him. His well-known, sign-off at he end of each show, “ Bring your money with you”, followed him right to the end. People would often call out to him “Did you bring your money with you Joe?” 

What most people did not know that he was lame from an early age, the result of having been run over as a little boy, and had spent a year in hospital. In his later years he managed his disability with great courage and little complaint. It didn’t stop him from dancing, swimming and fishing. During the Second World War it had kept him out of the armed services but didn’t stop him from active duty with the Home Guard. 

Joe had enormous empathy for sick and disabled children and worked tirelessly on their behalf. He received Rotary’s highest “Paul Harris” award, for community service. This is the other side of the coin. The grandson of a rabbi who continuously performed acts of charity and other good deeds. 

Joe lived a full and happy life. He would introduce his seven great grandchildren to strangers with the tag line, “You dont need gadgets for everything!” The great love he had for his family started with his late wife Dorothy. On hearing that he wanted to marry Dorothy, his friend said, “Joe you are reaching for the moon” and that was the measure for the rest of his life. 

Joseph Sandow was 89 years and survived by: 
Loving sisters, Minnie (UK) Hilda (USA) 
Dearest Father of Pauline, Sheila, Barbara 
Sons-in-law Arnold, Gerry and Peter 
Loving Grandfather to Melissa, Lewis, Elizabeth, Anita, Simon, Amanda and Vincent 
Loving Great Grandfather to Michaela, Anthony, Melody, Georgia, Samuel, Mia and Julia 

May Joe’s family be comforted among the Mourners of Zion. 

Geraldine Jones
President JOIN Inc

Please note: If you remember Joe and would like to pay tribute to his memory please contact me personally, Geraldine Jones, as I am in the process of writing his biography and will also be putting a profile on Joe on the JOIN website 

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