Berkowitz-Kumin-Bookatz Memorial Chapel

1985 South Taylor Road, Cleveland Heights, OH


Rebecca A Winner

19 March, 19512 January, 2019

Rebecca Ann Winner, 67, of Chagrin Falls, Ohio passed away peacefully at home on January 2, 2019 after a courageous seven-year battle with ALS. She was born on March 19, 1951 to Joseph and Rae Winner in Lewiston, Maine and graduated with a Bachelor's degree in sociology from Northeastern University and a Master's degree in social work from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Rebecca dedicated her life to social justice and to helping improve the lives of others. As a social worker, she served in many capacities, but the majority of her career was within the juvenile justice system; she spent more than 20 years at the State of Wisconsin Department of Juvenile Corrections in Milwaukee. She was a committed mentor and firm defender of disadvantaged youth, believing kids need many opportunities to get on the right path, even in a system that made this challenging. After she retired and moved to Ohio, she continued this role as a case manager connecting the elderly to supportive services, until her health impeded her ability to do so. Rebecca was also a dedicated wife, mother, and grandmother. She is survived by her husband of 43 years, Steve Rao, their children, Jess Rao (Sara Hosey) and Julia Rao (Dan Katz), and grandsons, John and Julian Hosey-Rao; she is also survived by her sisters Ellen Winner (David Lewis) and Linda Greenberg (Ian Greenberg) and many other family and friends. She is pre-deceased by her parents and her brother, Billy Winner. She had a passion for travel, art, gardening, and entertaining. Rebecca had a wonderful sense of humor and always laughed the loudest and longest. She will be sorely missed. A memorial service will be held in the spring. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the ALS Association (www.alsa.org).


Rebecca A Winner

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Marc Eshelman

13 January 2019

The warmest of smiles, the tenderest of hearts. My heartfelt condolences to her family. She made the world a much better place to wake up to every day she shared with us.

Inge Gomez-Michel

6 January 2019

From the very first time I saw Rebecca, I felt a warm, peaceful glow coming from her person, that made me wanting to talk to her. I could feel a kind heart filled with joy and love.
I loved watching her interacting with her kids, with so much sweetness and presence.
The last time I saw her at Nina’s wedding she was still holding that beautiful, peaceful, loving presence. Her courage was admirable!
Her departure is a big loss to all of us, her family, friends, aquaintances and the world.

Lots of love to your beautiful family Rebecca, during these difficult times.

nancy and barry sulkin

5 January 2019

to entire family: just heard the news about ann Rebecca and feel just awful. A beautiful and smart lady we cared for her greatly.
Please accept our sincere sympathy and would like to have telephone numbers to get in touch with linda and ellen and steve. please forward if possible.

Ralph Perrotta

5 January 2019

I always and only saw her at John and linda,s. She was a presence: smart, funny, wise and, I felt, immediately an old friend. She took inges side in a “discussion” we were having on one such occasion, and she was right. I’ll miss her.