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Beverly Evans Cohen

December 3, 1926 January 8, 2013
Beverly Evans Cohen
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Obituary for Beverly Evans Cohen

Beverly Evans Cohen

December 3, 1926-January 8, 2013

Middletown, NY

Beverly Cohen, a lifelong resident of Middletown, New York passed away on January 8, 2013. She was 86 years old.  Bev, as fondly referred to by friends and family, was born on December 3, 1926 at Thrall Hospital in Middletown. She was the only child of Norman “Jimmy” Evans and Belle (Secall) Evans.  

Bev attended school in Middletown and graduated from Middletown High School (MHS), Class of 1945.  In 1948, she married Herbert Cohen of Middletown (predeceased 1972). Together, they had two children, a daughter, Lynn (predeceased in 2004) and a son, Bruce, who resides in Warwick, New York with his wife Elizabeth Tornés.  In 1947, Bev was employed as an operator with the Orange County Telephone Company. She took a leave from work in 1949 to begin a family and raise her children. Bev returned to work in 1958 and retired in 1989. She remained with the telephone company for more than 30 years. At her retirement party in 1990, Beverly’s operator number 32 was also retired in recognition of her performance, dedication and commitment to her job. Throughout her employment, Bev witnessed the transformation and growth of a small telephone service provider into a major telecommunications corporation. Bev’s job helped shape her identity and enabled her to connect from the “Information Line” switchboard to all segments that comprise the Middletown community and beyond. She especially enjoyed working the summer months with temporary workers who were students at MHS.  She would rejoice like a proud parent when she read that one of “the girls” had gotten a job, opened a business, graduated from college, or got married.  Bev enjoyed maintaining friendships with her co-workers and those MHS classmates that remained in Middletown throughout her life.

 Bev loved the City of Middletown, especially the Second Ward where she resided most of her life and “downtown”, a local’s designation for the city’s business district. She embraced the city’s history, its institutions, its diverse neighborhoods, and its people. She liked to provide an oral history to a new business owner or resident, and recall businesses, restaurants, and families from earlier years that previously occupied their building.  Bev weaved the past into the present, especially during her senior years.  It created for her social order, belonging, security and community. 

Bev was an avid reader and word search puzzle aficionado. She appreciated contemporary music; preferred actors from a bygone era; hoped for a Triple Crown winner each spring; rejoiced in the sun every summer; and dreaded winter but refused to relocate to a warmer climate.  She enjoyed museum visits with the Middletown Arts Council, performances at the Paramount Theater, vacations with Green’s Travel and borrowing books from Thrall Library. Bev supported several local charities and civic organizations. She served as a Reader for Radio Vision through Ramapo/Catskill Library and joined groups such as Mulberry House, Middletown Historical Society, CWA Retirees and others. Bev encouraged her children to accept others without bias and prejudice; explore other cultures and traditions; and, never forget their origins and where they came from.  

Beverly’s son, Bruce, would like to thank his mom’s “Middletown Network” and those that cared for and comforted his mother during her declining health after hip surgery in March 2012. These include, St. Theresa’s Rehabilitation Center, Hope Gardens of Florida, New York, Hospice of Orange and Sullivan Counties, and Dr. John McDermott of Horizon Medical Group.   

Beverly Evans Cohen will be buried next to her mother in Hillside Cemetery in Middletown, NY at 11 am on Friday, January 11, 2013. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Applebee-McPhillips Funeral Home.  There will be no visitation.

Burial will be at 11 am on Friday, January 11, 2013 in Hillside Cemetery in Middletown.

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