Edith Schick Engel (1915-2011)

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Edith Schick Engel, of Larchmont, NY, died suddenly on November 8, 2011, at age 95.

Born December 20, 1915 to Ottilie Gluck Schick and Johann Schick, she was raised in new York City, attended Hunter College High School, and graduated from Hunter College in 1936. She began a 16 year affiliation with “Information Please,” becoming an assistant producer of radio and TV programs and movie shorts, and an editor of the almanac. Edith married Henry W. Engel in 1940, had two daughters, Judy and Ginger, and moved to Larchmont in 1953 where she continued to live for the rest of her life.

Edith later worked locally as a consultant and copywriter for a chain of franchised hardware stores, and as an assistant to an estate attorney for the elderly. From 1976 to the present, for personal reasons, she became an activist for the affirmation of grandparents/grandchildren’s rights. She testified at three congressional hearings, fought for and succeeded in having the NYS legislature and other states pass laws allowing grandparents to petition for visitation rights with grandchildren. For twenty years, she led support groups for divided families at the Scarsdale Family Counseling Center. Edith wrote throughout her life, having articles published in major magazines; she edited Better Learning: How to Cope with Learning Problems and compiled and co-edited One God: Peoples of the Book.

This year, at 95, she self-published Family Fortunes: The Wealth of Memories with an assortment of her essays on her life as a child in New York, the influence of teachers, the dogs in her life,the aging process, and sexual harassment behind the scenes of a legendary radio show. Edith loved the Yankees and took pride in having been offered a semi-pro baseball contract as a pitcher at fourteen while playing with her brother’s team on a NY city street. Edith will be remembered as a woman of wit, warmth, courage and great intellect. She was someone who saw needs and addressed them through words and action and delighted in bringing together people with common interests.

She was lovingly devoted to family and friends and is survived by children, Judy and Ginger; grandchildren, Stuart , Brooke and Adam ; and great-grandson, Gavin. She was predeceased by her husband, Henry, son-in-law Brian, and granddaughter, Kimberly.

A memorial service will be held in her honor on November 27, 2011 at 1:30 p.m. at The Ethical Culture Society of Westchester, 7 Saxon Wood Road, White Plains, NY 10605. http://ethicalsocietywestchester.org/ In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to National Committee for Grandparents for Children’s Rights (http://www.grandparentsforchildren.org/), The Glaucoma Foundation (glaucomafoundation.org), or NPR ( https://pledge3.wnyc.org/epledge/desktop/main/).

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