Claire Rudin

December 12, 1929 – March 21, 2024



Date: March 22, 2024

Time: 11:30 AM


Wellwood Cemetery: 1400 Wellwood Ave, West Babylon, NY 11704

Service Recording:   Click Here


The graveside funeral will be for immediate family only. A shiva will be held at the apartment of Joel and Naomi, at 201 West 70th Street, No. 34K, on Friday, March 22, from 5:00 until 8:00 pm.



In lieu of food or flowers, donations may be made to the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York,




Our dear mother, Claire Rudin, age 94, died peacefully last night under hospice care at her home after pneumonia fatally weakened her. She was born in 1929 at the beginning of the Great Depression, suffered the trauma of her father’s sudden death from a car accident when she was 10, worked with her sister Annette at her mother Bertha’s Bronx soda fountain making milkshakes and sundaes, and came of age during the nightmare of WWII. She attended Walton H.S. in the Bronx and Hunter College, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa, married our father, Leo, a civil engineer, in 1951 when she was 21, and had Joel when she was just 23 and Laura when she was 25. She was a leader in her new community in Bay Terrace, Queens, where she founded and edited the community newspaper, the Bay Terrace Coop, and organized the Bay Terrace Day Camp, located in Rockland County, that Laura and Joel attended.

Claire went back to school and earned her master’s degree in library science and rose in the NYC Board of Education from being a school librarian to the director of the entire NYC school library system. She wrote and published numerous freelance magazine articles and book reviews, especially concerning Jewish matters, founded a Holocaust Memorial library, wrote three books, and developed a network of close friends. All the while she put a delicious meal on the table every night for our family, took a series of epic cross-country and international trips, unimaginable to our parents as children of the Depression, that were among the highlights of their lives, and was a loving wife to our father until he passed away much too early in 2001. She was extraordinarily smart, highly intellectual and curious, a phenomenal Scrabble player, interested and involved in local politics and the NYC Teacher’s Union, but above all, dedicated to her husband and children. She took us to our first “Ban the Bomb” rally when Joel was nine and Laura was seven, and to Joan Baez concerts, and encouraged us to be independent and to strive to meet our potential. In her later years, she did the best she could to remain active and be a loving mother and grandmother, until Alzheimer’s disease gradually wore her down.

Laura did a wonderful job devotedly caring for our mother in her last years, aided by two amazing live-in homecare workers, Keita and Indra. She died in her sleep in her beloved Bay Terrace garden apartment that she and our father purchased for $2,500 and where she had lived since 1955. She is survived by Laura, her husband Phil Stein and daughters Eliza and Rachel, and by Joel, his wife Naomi Haber, and their children, David and Michelle. We will all miss her.

The graveside funeral will be for immediate family only.

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