My aunt Anne Rothenberg, née Anne Becker, died of cardiac arrest early this evening in New York.
Her son, my cousin Ron, said that she went peacefully. She had been in failing health and was undergoing physical therapy at a nursing home following a stay in the hospital after surgery.
Anne sang and played the piano (in her younger years she performed as Anne Barry) and was a vocal coach for Broadway performers. Her husband, my uncle Bill, died a few years ago after several years in a nursing home following a stroke. Bill had been a strong, handsome, athletic man, an educator, coach, and summer camp director and it was hard for many to see him weakened and unable to speak much after his stroke. Anne visited him every day after his move to the residential facility, staying most of the day and, after lunch, playing the piano for him and the other residents and singing their favorite tunes.
When we were younger and all involved in the summer camp my grandparents founded (Anne and Bill directed it for some years) Anne composed and directed children's musicals. At our big family reunion a couple of years ago, she sat down at the piano and played and sang, and several of us cousins sang with her. She was a spunky, dramatic, generous woman.
Anne was the mother not only of Ron, who cared for her kindly and diligently in her last months, but also of Lisa, who recently lost her husband Gerald. This is a lot of loss for my cousin Lisa.
May Anne rest in peace. May the Holy One bring consolation to Anne's children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, and may her memory be a blessing.