Mae Rivkin Herman, 98, formerly of West Hartford and Avon, died peacefully March 30 at her home in Boynton Beach, FL. Mae was born March 16, 1925, in Hartford, CT, the daughter of Lithuanian and Ukrainian immigrants Robert and Anne (Oxengoren) Rivkin. She was a proud member of the Weaver High School class of 1942. She earned a BA in English from the University of Connecticut in 1946, and briefly taught nursery school in the Boston area before settling in West Hartford and raising her family. More than twenty years later Mae earned her MA in Education from the University of Hartford, and began a successful career teaching English in the West Hartford Public Schools, where she brought numerous innovations into the classroom, and was well-loved by her students and well respected by her colleagues. In her retirement, she enjoyed the “snowbird” experience for many years, before finally settling in Boynton Beach, FL permanently in 2014. A devoted Zionist, Mae was active in and held leadership posts in numerous Jewish philanthropic organizations. She and her family were charter members of Beth El Temple of West Hartford, beginning in 1954. At different times in her life, Mae enjoyed playing golf, walking, reading, watching movies, and listening to the music of her day, especially Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald, but she found her most enduring passion at the bridge table. Mae was an expert bridge player, at one time participating simultaneously in multiple social bridge clubs with old friends. She especially excelled at playing defense because, as she put it, she “was always dealt lousy cards.” One of her most profoundly joyful experiences came at the age of 81, when she was located and embraced by relatives on her mother’s side who were long thought to be lost in the Holocaust. Mae was predeceased by her first husband, Dr. Joseph L. Herman, to whom she was married for 44 years, her second husband, Dr. Samuel Walter Askinas, to whom she was married for 21 years, and her brother Seymour Rivkin. She is survived by her sons Dr. Barry Herman (Yiyang) of Redwood City, CA, Dr. Richard Herman (Evelyn) of North Easton, MA, and Dr. Jonathan Herman (Ellen) of Decatur, GA, her grandchildren Anna Herman, Noah Herman, Molly Herman-Gallow, and Carly Herman-Gallow, and several nieces and nephews. The Herman family is grateful to the team of home health aides (her “crew”), who provided Mae with excellent care during the last several years. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, April 4 at 11:00 AM, at Beth El Temple, 2626 Albany Avenue, West Hartford, with interment to follow at Beth El Temple Cemetery, Avon. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Jewish philanthropic or educational organization of the donor’s choice.
Thursday, March 30, 2023
Tuesday, April 4, 2023
Chapel of Beth El Temple
Beth El Temple Cemetery
51 Jackson Street Avon, CT 06001
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Jewish philanthropic or educational organization of the donor’s choice.