Joel Hochberg, who started his coin-op career at Runyan Sales, at the time the largest route operation in the state of New Jersey, and later as vice president of Centuri, passed away peacefully on April 18 in Sunny Isles Beach, Fla. He was 87.
Many industry veterans will remember him as president of Rare Coin-It, which brought to the states from Japan many successful video games like Birdie King II. This led to a successful transition into the consumer side of the business. Hochberg was also the sales manager at Florida game maker Allied Leisure Industries. The company made novelties and a few pinballs before the video game came out in 1973.
Joel was an active part of the Jewish community of South Florida, establishing the Hochberg Lower and Middle Schools at his temple, Beth Torah Benny Rok Campus. He is survived by his son Scott, who also worked at Rare, along with his wife of 61 years Marcia and daughter Eileen, along with two grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Beth Torah Benny Rok Campus, 20350 NE 26 Ave., Miami, FL 33180. May his memory be a blessing.