Bernice Sommerstein

11 April, 192513 November, 2020

Mrs. Bernice Sommerstein, nee Bernice E. Sachar, of Lynn, Massachusetts, passed away at 95 years of age on Friday morning, November 13, in Teaneck, NJ, at the home of daughter and son-in-law, Wendy and Paul Levites. "Sach," as she was known before marriage, graduated Lynn English High School in 1942, and, subsequently, Academie Moderne in Boston where she learned the finer points of modeling and etiquette.

During World War II, Mrs. Sommerstein and lifetime best friend, the late Ann Hymanson Nussbaum, served as Rosie-the-Riviters joining the ranks of American women participating in the war effort by welding, riveting, and otherwise building ships and aircraft. The two were stationed in Long Beach, CA. Back in Lynn after the war, Mrs. Sommerstein married the late Red Sommerstein; they had six children. In her late 50s, Mrs. Sommerstein accrued computer skills and entered the corporate paying workforce for the first time. Her last and favorite position was Associate Director of Activities at the Jewish Rehabilitation Center in Salem. Her creative side blossomed. The sight of Mrs. Sommerstein hauling wheelchair-bound residents into the JRC bus and driving them to blueberry-picking outings, butterfly conservatories, ice-cream-parlors, Red-Sox games, and the zoo…became a weekly happening. She hired entertainers, organized Purim parties, Chanukah parties and Pesach Seders; and she initiated the first of what became the annual JRC float in the Fourth of July parade through Swampscott (always featuring a relative as the Statue of Liberty).

Mrs. Bernice E. Sommerstein leaves behind six children and their spouses: Andrea and Kalman Eller of Israel; Robin Sommerstein and Lee Henley of Los Angeles; Ivy and Dr. Fred Kushner of New Orleans; Wendy and Paul Levites of Teaneck; Arthur and Ann Sommerstein of Marblehead; and John Sommerstein and Lauren Mayhew of Gloucester. She also leaves grandchildren Adam, Jared, Mia, Sara, and Sophie, and three great grandchildren.

Known for her humility and patience, she occupies permanent residency in the hearts of her family.


Bernice Sommerstein

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Wendy Levites

November 26, 2020

My mom, OBM, was my best friend. Not just a mom, but a caring loving friend. All of my life I adored her and will miss her everyday for the rest of my life. Some of her greatest traits were the ability to forgive and to be non judgemental . My first Thanksgiving without my mother. Oh, how she will be missed...

robert nussbaum

November 19, 2020

As we all feel the loss it is an end to the era of the Lynn area connections for all the Moretsky, Sommerstein and Nussbaum families. The last of the Golden Girls! Condolences to all the family and our thoughts and prayers are with you while we remember all the good old times over the many years.

Robin Sommerstein

November 18, 2020

Bernice leaves behind 5 (five) great grandchildren and not 3 as currently written.

Robin Sommerstein

November 18, 2020

Bernice leaves behind 6 great grandchildren not 3 as currently written.

Allen Moretsky

November 16, 2020

I always looked forward to seeing Aunt Bernice. She was so kind; never a harsh word. She is representative of a bygone, and perhaps better, era. Her children really came together to help her in her last years, my hat is off to you all. Amazing, really, how well you all did and got along for her benefit.