In Loving Memory Dinesh Shantilal Shah

Ahmedabad, India
November 09, 2019
Weston, CT
Funeral Home

Spear-Miller Funeral Home

39 South Benson Road,
Fairfield CT US 06824


10:00am - 12:00pm

39 South Benson Road,
Fairfield CT 06824

November 16, 2019


Spear-Miller Funeral Home

Funeral Service

39 South Benson Road,
Fairfield CT 06824

Saturday, November 16, 2019 12:00pm


Family Gathering


Jain Center of Connecticut

Dinesh Shantilal Shah

Dinesh Shantilal Shah passed away on Saturday, November 9, in Bridgeport, Connecticut. He was the son of Shantilal Manilal Shah and Shantaben Amratlal Shah, husband of Anila, father of Saurin, father-in-law of Sara, and grandfather of Sarina and Priya, and is survived by his brothers, Ramesh and Dilip, and their families.

Dinesh was born in May 1935, in the Nishapole/Zaveriwad area of Ahmedabad, the oldest of 4 children. Dinesh married his neighbor and childhood sweetheart Anila Haji in February 1966 in Ahmedabad. Soon after their marriage, Dinesh left India to pursue his graduate studies in the USA. His son, Saurin, was born in November of that same year. Later Anila and Saurin joined Dinesh in New York City, then moved to New Jersey, and ultimately settled in Fairfield, Connecticut in 1975.

As he was growing up, Dinesh was known to work hard and excel in his academic studies. He came from humble beginnings and credits the Jain Oswal Club of Ahmedabad for not only paying his school fees, but also for giving him the chance to prove himself. He graduated with a Bachelors in Commerce in 1956 from H.L. College of Commerce, Gujarat University, and earned a Chartered Accountant (CA) designation in 1959 – he passed the necessary CA exams on his first try which was a rare feat in those days. Dinesh was among the first 5000 CAs in all of India. He was also among the first to attend a management course sponsored by Harvard Business School in India, and later to receive a full scholarship for an MBA at the State University of New York (Albany).

Upon becoming a CA, Dinesh joined and quickly rose to become the youngest manager of Raipur Mills, a textile company, in Ahmedabad. After completing his MBA, Dinesh joined Price Waterhouse and then International Basic Economy Corporation, an entity founded by Rockefeller Brothers to promote economic development, for a few years each and eventually became a Director of International Taxation at Champion International in Stamford, CT where he served for over 25 years, retiring in 1998.

In his early professional days, when Dinesh was in India, he was affectionately known as “guru” among his friends for his brilliance, ability to teach, offer sage advice, and tireless efforts to help members of his community get jobs and training. He was famous for taking what was left of his weekly salary after giving most of it to his family, and spending it on spicy snacks and movie tickets for friends and relatives in the neighborhood. He was also a prankster, especially with his friends, tricking them on at least several occasions to take an out of town adventure.

In the USA, Dinesh was always ready to share a funny story, discuss the latest news and market developments, play cards, or make chai, connect with friends/relatives and build community. He was a man with a keen intellect, a thundering voice, a hearty laugh, an adventurous spirit, and a generous and loving heart. He always enjoyed having time with his family and friends, and was always ready for his granddaughters to make him laugh. He is remembered fondly by many across several continents.

During retirement Dinesh enjoyed spending more time with Anila; they were able to take a number of wonderful trips, including to Bali and Thailand and other places, and of course regular visits to India to see their family and friends.

Dinesh and Anila were also devoted to building Gujarati/Jain community in CT and the Jain Center of Connecticut (JCC). Indeed, the first meeting of the JCC was held in their home; the center is now almost 40 years old and has a dedicated prayer space/temple.

Anila, Saurin and his family would like to thank all of our family and friends and in particular, the Jain Center of Connecticut for their full support.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Jain Center of Connecticut -

Jai Jinendra / Om Shanti

Events: Please RSVP to Saurin Shah ( and the JCC.

Funeral Services and Cremation:
Saturday, November 16, 2019
Spear-Miller Funeral Home
39 South Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824

Celebration of Life:
Sunday, November 17, 2019
Hindu Cultural Center/JCC
96 Chapel Street
Stratford, CT 06614

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8 Guestbook Entries for Dinesh Shantilal Shah

  1. Saurin, he was a great soul and will be missed.
    Please accept our apology for not being able to attend the funeral, but our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  2. Dinesh fua was a great soul.Always full of interesting stories of his life experiences.He was very jovial and shall remember good times spent with him.
    The last time we met was when I spent a night in their new home and was up till late catching up on family stories that Saurin Foi and I were having.He was giving us great inputs of family connections and history .
    Sorry will not be able to make it for the funeral services but prayers for you all to be given strength to bear his loss .May his soul RIP .love hugs to Dali Foi Saurin Sara Sarina and Priya

  3. We have lots of fond memories of uncle. He was indeed a man with strong cultural and community roots. He will be dearly remembered. JJ and OM Stantihi!!! 🙏🏼

  4. Dear Saurin and Anila ben,
    We have had quite a few discussions on Jain philosophy over the years and now is the most important time to remember the Jain philosophy. We are reminded of our true capacity to be able to become God, Mahaveer, Supreme being. I am a soul and I am immortal, I was never born or never died. I came to this life to experience myself, to progress in the experience, and then to march forward.
    At present Dinesh bhai is giving us a rare opportunity to reflect on our true nature, understand our true blissful being. If we have deviated from our most important reality, then today is the day. I am a soul, totally free, complete, independent. My happiness is not dependent on others or on any circumstances. The soul, me, is happy by nature. I am a knower and not a doer. I am an equanimous knower. I know this world as it is, and I always remain in my true nature.
    Today we are thankful for this rare, precious opportunity to understand ourselves within. This moment is the right moment for all of us to take time to learn, understand, contemplate, remember our own true immortal, blissful nature. It is the time to question why I feel sad, hurt, lost, bad, if by nature I am only happy with unlimited virtues. It is the time to reflect upon my immortal reality. At this very moment we can go within ourselves. We have tried endlessly to do all other activities but have not understood our soul. The time has come for this utmost useful activity for me.
    This is my hope and wish: that all of us never forget, undermine, or undervalue our reality; that we always remember our true nature and live with stable, unshakable, happy, equanimous feelings.
    With everlasting love,

  5. We came to know Dineshbhai first week we moved to Connecticut in 1980. We kept our relationship flourishing till to day. We learned
    A lot from him about taxes, investments, politics, travel and world in general. We cherish the time we spent with him. We will miss him. We pray his soul