Eleanor (Siegel) Kohn

Eleanor KohnEleanor "Ellie"(Siegel) Kohn, 93, of Danbury, beloved wife of the late Dr. Albert Kohn died on Friday, January 6, 2016 at Filosa Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Danbury. Mrs. Kohn was born in Bridgeport on September 21, 1923 to Bea and Jack Siegel. The Siegels moved to Danbury when Ellie was 3 months old. Ellie was proud to call herself a Danburian. Her roots go very deep in the community. She attended Danbury Public Schools and was a graduate of the Danbury High School class of 1940. She went on to college at UConn, where she received her BA . In 1945 she graduated from Columbia School of Social Work with a Masters Degree. She stayed in New York City for a few years after receiving her degree while Al finished dental school. During that time she worked for social service agencies as a child placement worker, a family counselor and an adoption worker.

In 1950 Ellie and Al moved to Danbury and Al opened his dental practice. Ellie began her lifetime work as a mental health and human services advocate. She was instrumental in starting the Danbury Mental Health Association. She worked to get the mental health clinic up and running at Danbury Hospital. She was a founding member of (to name a few); Danbury Youth Services, Danbury Human Rights Committee, Danbury Unified Social Service Board, Mayors Citizen Advisory Board as well as serving on the boards of the Jewish Federation of Greater Danbury, and the United Way.

Her work extended past the local community. Among her many appointments, she was President of the State Mental Health Association, Vice President of the Connecticut Association of Alcohol Councils, led the research committee for the National Institute of Mental Health and sat on the board of the National Association of Mental Health Research Committee. She testified before Congressional Committees and she was named by the Jimmy Carter administration to the Presidential Committee on Mental Health. She received the Presidential Commendation for distinguished service from the American Psychiatric Association.

As voracious as she was in her advocacy work, she was most happy when she was with her family. Married for 66 years, Al and Ellie had a fairy tale relationship. They finished each other’s sentences and their favorite company was each other. Ellie is survived by her son, Larry Kohn and his wife Peggy (MA); and daughters, Kathy Keuning and her husband, Eric (IL) and Amy Kohn (Danbury); seven grandchildren, Becca, Arielle, Blythe, Tessa, Zach, Gabe and Livvy as well as cherished nieces and nephews. In addition to her husband and parents, Mrs. Kohn was predeceased by her brother Arthur Siegel.

Funeral services will take place on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 at 12 noon in the United Jewish Center, 141 Deer Hill Ave., Danbury with Rabbi Stefan Tiwy officiating.

Interment will follow in the United Jewish Center Cemetery, 210 Gray's Bridge Rd., Brookfield, CT.

The family will receive friends in the Feinson Library of the United Jewish Center on Tuesday after 11:30 A.M.

The family would like to thank the staff and administration of Filosa’s for their kindness and superb care. They filled the last few years of her life in song.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to Danbury Youth Services, 91 West Street, Danbury, CT 06810 or the charity of one’s choosing..

Jowdy-Kane Funeral Home, 9-11 Granville Ave., Danbury is in charge of arrangements.

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