The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

A very sad announcement

Elagins's picture

A very sad announcement

I just received a call from Nathan Berg, Norm's son, who told me that Norm passed away at about 6:00pm this afternoon (5/9/12). Apparently the MRSA staph infection he'd been suffering from lodged in his system and ultimately killed him.

I'm devastated: during the years he and I worked together to write ITJB, a real bond of affection grew between us and his loss leaves another big hole in my heart.

I'll post more information on the funeral, where to send cards, etc., as soon as I have it.

Even though he's no longer with us, he lives on in ITJB.


dabrownman's picture

you, Nathan and the rest of the family.  He will be deeply missed.

mrfrost's picture

So sorry to hear that.

Rest in peace Norm.

LindyD's picture

Norm had a very big presence here when he was active at TFL.  He was always so helpful and willing to share and teach.

Thankfully his wisdom and helpfulness remain available here at TFL - his handle was nbicomputers.

Shalom, Norm.

carblicious's picture

My condolesences to his friends and family.


Franko's picture

Very sorry to hear this news Stan, my condolences to you and Norm's family. I wasn't fortunate enough to have any interactions with him on the forum but I know he was very highly regarded by those who did for his generosity and dedication to the craft. A great loss to all of us.


HeidiH's picture

I'm so sorry, Stan.   I loved the "Norm's Eye Views" in the book and am so thankful he shared his knowledge and formulas with us.  Please send my sympathy to his family.


varda's picture

about Norm's untimely passing.   One of the posts that I stumbled on when I first joined TFL was this one.    Suddenly I felt like I wasn't in Kansas anymore, and that somehow I'd wandered into the big time.  

dwcoleman's picture

Time to rest after all your hard work.

dmsnyder's picture

I am very sad to hear of Norm's passing. He was a very special man. He had a deep knowledge of baking ingredients and techniques and was generous in sharing his extraordinary expertise here on TFL. I'm so glad he was able to share his life's experience as a traditional Jewish baker in ITJB. We are fortunate to have had him among us, even for so short a time.

Stan, please express my condolences to Nathan and the family. And thanks to you for helping Norm keep the tradition alive.


aytab's picture

My deepest sympathies, his family and friends shall be in my prayers during this difficult time. 

rossnroller's picture

My condolences. The ITJB project will always be special to me, and doubtless to all others who participated in the test bakes. It's my only connection with Norm, but a real and enduring one. R.I.P.


belfiore's picture

My sincerest condolences to Norm's family and to you. He has graced our baking community  with a wonderful legacy and will be missed greatly.


pmccool's picture

of Norm's death.  How good that he had the opportunity to see ITJB all the way through from concept to printed book!  That's quite a legacy.

My condolences to his family.


Floydm's picture

I'm so sorry to hear that, Stan.  My condolences to his friends and family.


yy's picture

My condolences to all who loved him. May he rest in peace. 

salma's picture

So sorry to hear this saad news. My condolences to you Stan and Norm's family. I had made his take on the onion rolls. Have to make them again soon in his memory.

breadforfun's picture

He leaves for us a mastery of the craft he so obviously loved through ITJB.  Some of my favorite parts of the book are Norm's reminiscences of his baking life.  I'm so glad he got to share them with us.

My condolences to his family and friends.


Isand66's picture

What a great loss.  My condolences to you and his family.


gmabaking's picture

Please add my heartfelt condolences to Norm's family.

Through his sharing of recipes, procedures and historical perspective, he has invited us to somehow be part of that long line of bakers. The portion of his life that was his trade has been recorded in the pages of ITJB for future bakers.  How fortunate we have been to be a part of all that.

SylviaH's picture

My condolences to Norm's family and friends.  He will always be remembered by TFL community.



joyfulbaker's picture

Thank you, Stan, for letting us know.  It feels like we here at TFL are part of a unique family and are sharing your loss.   Please let Norm's son Nathan and his family know that we deeply regret his passing and appreciate the very special contribution he has made, alongside yourself, to the preservation of Jewish culture.  Clearly, you are feeling his loss deeply, and Jerry and I send our sincere condolences to you.  


joyfulbaker's picture

I followed up the post you highlighted with Norm's holiday baking and the picture of him scraping the last of the dough (or frosting?) in the bowl.  What an incredible show of his talent--and what wonderful responses from so many TFL'ers.  Thanks, Varda!


PiPs's picture

Sad news

Our thoughts go out to his friends and family.


heidet's picture

I m so very sorry  to hear that Norm was not able to recover. I am sure I am not alone in wishing that his family and close friends find some small comfort in knowing how many people he touched and how many respected him.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

in that big kitchen in the sky.   May your friends and family know that we miss you too.

LapLap's picture

As a bread dabbling lurker who has only just started baking seriously and posting on TFL, my own condolences will seem quite lightweight compared to those of this community who obviously love Norm. But he has left a considerable legacy behind so I can only hope some comfort can be taken from the fact that Norm (in his guise of nbicomputers) is still a very real and live presence on the internet. I have already gained from his contributions and still have much to learn from him.  Norm is my tutor, I am his student and our relationship is still very young.  I'm sure there are many others like myself who have only just (or not quite yet) started to get to know him.

ehanner's picture

Hearing that Norm has been taken from this Earth at such a young age is very sad for me as I know it is for his family and close friends. Norm was a powerful personality, not a bashful man. Bold and confident were his ways. He grew from the low end of the bakery to become a master at his trade. Norm's contributions here, both in technical advice and personal stories are classic and not to be forgotten. He helped me immensely to become the apprentice I am today. I hope his family  finds some gratification in the tremendous positive impact he had here at TFL.He will not be forgotten.

Thanks Stan for letting us know of Norm's passing. Tough day for you I'm sure.


proth5's picture

So much has already been siad about Norm's contributions to baking and to these pages.  I was very much looking forward to him posting again and am sorry to hear this news.

My thoughts go out to his friends and family.

He was and will continue to be missed.


swtgran's picture

Deepest sympathy to Norm's family.  He was a valued contributer to the art of baking.  He will be sadly missed.  Terry R.

Crider's picture

Condolences to his family and you. His legacy lives on.

bnom's picture

This must be a very painful loss for you Stan.  I know of Norm only through his contributions to this site and ITJB, which I'm sure is just one exquisite slice of the pie.  When you are up to it, perhaps you can share with us a favorite story about Norm.


OldWoodenSpoon's picture

Norm does live on in ITJB, as well as in the hearts of those who loved him, those who knew him, and those of us who only really encountered him here and in baking.  I can only imagine your devastation Stan, and that of his family.  It always seems so inadequate to offer condolences, or anything else, at these times but I add mine to the outpouring evident above nonetheless.  Just know, and let his family know, that you do not face this alone.  As you can see, and as I hope his family can know, you are joined by an army of friends, acquaintances, comrades in the kitchen, and all the rest of us that have only encountered his legacy, reputation, and contributions here on The Fresh Loaf.  Be comforted by this if such is even remotely possible.

With respect

Cyberider's picture

Sorry to hear the sad news.  Norm sounded like a swell guy and baker.  Sure enjoy his sidebars in ITJB.  My condolences to Stan and his family and everyone blessed by his presence.



wassisname's picture

Most sincere condolences to all Norm's family and friends.

wally's picture

Norm shared all of his years of experience on this site freely.  It's a loss for all of us.


Dragonbones's picture

I'm very sad to hear of Norm's passing. My sincere condolences to his friends and family.


Thank you, Norm, for having shared your experience and recipes with us here. I shall be making your onion rolls this weekend, in your honor.


Polish Babka's picture
Polish Babka

My deepest condolences to Norm's family and friends.

Thank you for sharing all your knowladge with us. Thank you for the ITJB book, nowI can make some of the treats I remember from my childhood.



Frequent Flyer's picture
Frequent Flyer

for you and his family.


AnnaInNC's picture

Rest in peace, Norm and thank you for all the wonderful recipes you shared with us.



cgmeyer2's picture

my deepest sympathy to you & norm's family. i've enjoyed all of the recipes


Mebake's picture

My deepest condolences to Nathan and the family, Stan. Although i have not had the honor of intracting with late Mr. Norman, his posts, replies, assistance, and ultimately the book,live among us. It saddens me to learn of the passing of a TFL member. RIP

SallyBR's picture

So very sorry.  My heart missed a beat when I saw the subject, and I clicked on it already expecting the worst


a terrible loss, please pass my condolences to the family.   very very sad



Stuart Borken's picture
Stuart Borken

Although Norm has passed on, he has left a legacy of a good name and a history of an era of Jewish baking along with the recipes and techniques.  He has left us with more than most people leave behind.  We are all the richer for what he has imparted to us.

Mazel Tov for a life well lived, albeit too short.

Stuart Borken

Minneapolis, Mn.

cgmeyer2's picture

my husband & i extend our deepest sympathies to you, norm & his family.

we have really enjoyed all of the recipes & challenges.


cranbo's picture

Just getting to this thread, I've been on the road for a while... what sad news. Norm was such a wealth of knowledge. My sympathies to his family and friends. 

loydb's picture

I'm also late to this thread, I'm so sorry to see him gone. ITJB opened up an entirely new world of flavors and traditions to me (and many others as well). It is a good legacy for him. My thoughts and best wishes go to his family.


Skibum's picture

I am deeply sorry for your loss. I was still pretty new to the TFL when he passed. I am loving your book!

My deepest sympathies Stan! Affection for our loved ones never goes away.

Peace, Brian

Elagins's picture

His voice and his legacy live on. A piece of him is in everything I bake.