Zelma ‘Zel’ Kahn
Zelma Marcelle Eatenson Kahn passed away on the evening of Sept. 22, 2023 in Palo Alto, California, just a few weeks before reaching her 104th birthday (Nov. 8).
Zelma, or “Zel” (as she liked to be called), had just survived her second bout of COVID-19, as well as a move to a new apartment in the high-care wing of the assisted living facility where she lived. The last three days of her life, she was struggling to breathe (partially as a result of having had COVID-19). However, she was, as she had been for all of her very long life, aware and alert and cognitively “with it” until almost the very end.
Zel was born in 1919 and raised in Dallas. Her father, Sam Eatenson was from Berdichev (Ukraine); and her mother, Anna Lawrence Eatenson, was from Ployesti, Romania. She had two brothers, Sol Lawrence Eatenson and Ervin Eatenson.
After briefly attending SMU, Zel married Frederick M. Kahn (1917-1975) in 1941. During World War II, Zel and Fred lived on various Air Force bases across the U.S. Following the war, they moved to Denver, where they started a cosmetics business whose main product was a hand cream called La Viola, which was specially formulated to heal dry skin in the high-altitude Colorado environment.
In Denver, they raised three children (Robert, Ted and Patti Kahn). With close friends, Evie and Izzy Rothstein and others, they helped found and build a new Jewish Conservative synagogue, Congregation Beth Joseph, which became one of east Denver’s leading traditional synagogues in the 1950s-1960s. Zel was active in Sisterhood and served for a time as its vice president.
The Kahns lived in Denver for 17 years, spent a year in San Diego, and then moved back to Dallas in 1965. Zel became a highly successful real estate agent in North Dallas, and she continued living there until 2011 when she moved to Palo Alto. Like many Dallasites – and many real estate agents – she was always stylishly and impeccably dressed.
Zel was the quintessential extrovert. She could walk into a room full of strangers and talk to each of them as if she’d known them all her life. An hour later, she could tell you everyone’s names, life histories, occupations, number of children, etc. Her memory was phenomenal; even at the age of 103, she could memorize and repeat people’s telephone numbers.
A true Texan/Southern Belle, she never lost her habit of calling everyone around her “honey.” During the Vietnam War, a Denver friend quipped that all the U.S. had to do to end the war was send Zel over to talk to Ho Chi Minh, the leader of North Vietnam. Her friend said Zel would just walk into the room and say, “Now Ho, Honey, we just need to talk about this….”
In her younger years, Zel was an avid gardener and lover of growing things. When she moved out of her house in Dallas, she didn’t mourn the loss of the house as much as she mourned leaving the trees, especially the beautiful crape myrtles she had planted, which had grown into lovely, stately trees with masses of fuchsia blossoms.
Zel was happiest when surrounded by family. She gave to all of her children a strong moral and ethical compass, She had an unshakeable connection to the Jewish communities of both Denver and Dallas, as well as being the oldest member of Congregation Kol Emeth in Palo Alto. She was always a strong supporter of Israel and StandWithUs, and she was honored several years ago for her lifetime membership in Hadassah.
She loved being around children and dogs, and she adored Broadway musicals. She never lost her Dallas/Southern Belle ambiance and always used to end every conversation with, “God willing, and the creek don’t rise.”
A funeral service was held Sept. 28 in Dallas. A community memorial service will be held in Palo Alto at the end of the traditional Jewish “Shloshim” — 30 days of mourning — at the end of October.
She is survived by children: Bob (Lynn Levy), Ted (Frona), and Patti Kahn (Bill Kornfeld); five grandchildren: Alyssa Ortiz-Kahn (Steven Ortiz), Ben Kahn, Yoni Kahn (Alison Rosenblum), Aaron Kahn and Ilana Kornfeld; and three great-grandchildren: Niko and Theo Ortiz-Kahn, and Micah Taylor Kahn.
Donations in her memory may be made to Hadassah, the Jewish Women’s Zionist Organization of America.
May her memory always be for a blessing.
Larry Stephen Stern, 79, of Dallas, passed away on Sept. 26, 2023.
He was born in Wichita Falls, Texas on June 4, 1944. Larry graduated from Wichita Falls High School and received a bachelor’s degree from University of Oklahoma. He married Ann Prengler Stern on Jan. 5, 1969. Larry had a career in real estate and the energy industry. He was a longtime member of Congregation Shearith Israel, a beloved supporter of Chabad and had a passion for sports, family and friends. Larry was known for his innate ability to connect with others, always picking up the phone to call a friend or a family member. He will be missed for his warmth, his kindness and his wonderful sense of humor.
Larry was proceeded in death by his parents, Rosaline and Meyer Stern z”l, and his mother and father-in-law, Minnie and Israel Prengler z”l.
He is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Ann Stern; his children Lisa (Carlos) Ido and Josh (Hilary) Stern; his grandchildren, Gabby, Jonah and Alex Ido, Noah, Aidan, Benjamin and Sarah Stern; his sister Judy (Merill Pearlman) Johnson; his brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Irving and Lauri Prengler; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Ruth L. Weiner
Ruth L. Weiner passed away Sept. 30, 2023. Ruth was preceeded in death by her parents Hyman and Celia Leiderman, her brother David Leiderman, her son Mark Wiener, and her beloved husband Larry.
She was born in Detroit, Michigan Dec. 7, 1929. She was married to Larry Wiener, and they were married for over 60 years until his passing from Alzheimer’s. They moved to Dallas 20 years ago and she was a wonderful caregiver to Larry.
Ruth was so artistic. She studied art education and received her bachelor’s and master’s degree in art education. She taught elementary art for 35 years in Berkeley, Michigan.
Ruth was a master bridge player and played in many bridge tournaments in Detroit, Las Vegas and Dallas. She loved to travel.
She is survived by her beloved daughter, Karen Winkler of Plano; her Loving grandchildren, Jeff (Stacy) Winkler of Simi Valley, California; Debbie Winkler of Frisco, and Steve Winkler of Frisco. She is also survived by precious great-grandchildren Nolan, Tate and Tori Winkler; and many cousins and friends!
The family requests memorial donations be made to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, 322 Eighth Avenue, 16th Floor, New York, NY 10001;