Andrew Pavlovsky, law student, dies at 30

Friends and family recall Andrew G. Pavlovsky — a promising young law student who died of a heart ailment last week at age 30 — as a person with a strong sense of ethics and deep devotion to his family.

"He was a neshama, a pure soul and a good heart, the way he took care of other people and was there for everybody," said his sister, Julie Rosenberg. "He was a devoted son and husband and uncle. There was no better in any of those roles."

He died at his San Francisco home Sunday, Nov. 9 just eight months after he was married.

Hundreds attended a funeral Nov. 12 at Congregation Rodef Sholom in San Rafael, where Pavlovsky grew up.

Pavlovsky had a history of ventricular tachychardia — a rapid heart rate — and was the first in the country to have a procedure called ablation, his sister said. It is not known yet whether his death is related to his ventricular tachycardia.

Pavlovsky graduated from Branson School in Ross and the University of Pennsylvania, where he received a bachelor of arts degree in international relations, graduating with honors. At the time of his death, he was a member of the graduating class at Hastings College of the Law. He had accepted an offer to join the San Francisco office of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe following graduation in May.

"He finally found a profession that he loved. He had a bright future that was taken away so early," said Rosenberg, who lives in Morris Plain, N.J.

Pavlovsky was ranked in the top 5 percent of his class and was a member of the Hastings Law Journal. He was also a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity and the Concordia-Argonaut Club of San Francisco.

In addition to Rosenberg, he is survived by his wife, Stacey Torman, former editorial assistant at the Jewish Bulletin; his parents, Judge Gilbert and Joyce Pavlovsky of San Rafael; and his sister, Lisa Pavlovsky of Sausalito.

Pavlovsky celebrated his bar mitzvah and confirmation at Rodef Sholom. The congregation's rabbi, Michael Barenbaum, knew Pavlovsky almost all his life and officiated at his wedding. "I think he was connected to the Jewish world and cared about it," Barenbaum said.

Pavlovsky had a strong sense of ethics from the time he was young, Barenbaum said. "He was just such a fine person, fine in the sense of decent and gentle and caring. These are the sort of subtle qualities that you don't always notice missing in people but you always notice when they're there."

In lieu of flowers, his family has suggested that memorial donations be made to the UCSF Electrophysiology Fund in care of Dr. Melvin Scheinman, M-U E4, Box 1354, 500 Parnassus Ave., S.F., CA 94143, or to a Jewish charity of your choice.