Kathy Lee Ellison, 67 of Dayton, died on Jan. 4. She surrendered gracefully after an 18-month fight with breast cancer. Ms. Ellison lived in Oxford, Ohio from 1989 until the onset of the cancer in 2012. She was born in Mansfield to Joseph and Lois Ellison. She graduated from Smith College in 1968 with a degree in sociology, and later earned a master’s degree in education from The Ohio State University, and a J.D. from University of Dayton. After she completed law school, she hung out her own shingle. As a sole practitioner, she provided affordable legal services to working-class families in Dayton for more than a third of a century. Ms. Ellison was active in the women’s movement, Girl Scouting, the Dayton Jewish International Film Festival, volunteer gardening through MetroParks, fair housing, Democratic politics in Butler County, preservation of SunWatch Indian Village, Lunafest (a festival of short films by, for, and about women), and other progressive causes. She was profiled in Judith Ezekiel’s 2002 book Feminism in the Heartland, as a key organizer of the Dayton women’s movement in the 1970s. She was also an avid reader and a film enthusiast. In 2002, she was honored with the Classical Association of the Middle West and South Award for helping her daughter, Lindsay, reinstate the Latin department at her high school in Oxford. Surviving her are: her daughter Lindsay Meck of New York; her partner and caregiver Phil Hinrichs of Dayton; her sister Jane Ellison Usher and her sons, Sam and Jack Usher of Los Angeles; her brother Robert Ellison and his wife Karen of Parkersburg, W.Va. and their children, Jennifer Ellison of Madison, Wisc., and Joseph Ellison of Columbus; her brother Peter Ellison of Mansfield and his daughter, Jaime Wheeler of Santa Monica; and her former husband of 33 years, Stuart Meck of Trenton, N.J. Before she died, Ellison requested that any memorial contributions be made to Planned Parenthood, Dayton Project Minors Fund (2314 Auburn Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45219). Or alternatively, in her words, “take Phil Hinrichs to lunch.”

Stephen M. Friedberg, age 63, of Dayton, passed away unexpectedly Jan. 5 at his residence. Mr. Friedberg, a graduate of Fairview High School Class of 1968, was the owner of Stephen’s Furniture since 1985. Throughout his life, Mr. Friedberg cherished the company of his family and friends, and shared with them his love of luxury cars, music, and movies. Always a loving, caring, and giving person, he will be remembered for his kindness and big heart. Mr. Friedberg was preceded in death by his parents, Jerome and Mardelle (Levin) Friedberg; uncles David and Sam Levin; aunts Barbara and Leah Levin, Bea (Harry) Kruger, Gertrude Friedberg, Dorothy (Samuel) Segelin, and Belle (Leon) Simon. Mr. Friedberg is survived by his brothers, Gary of Pittsburgh and Howard of Dayton; uncles, Louis Levin (Sarah Litwin) and Allen Levin both of Washington Twp.; aunt Karen Levin of Washington Twp.; nephews and nieces Michael (Lauren) Friedberg, Christina Friedberg, Carolyn Friedberg, Lauren Michaels (Nisan Earnest), Lisa Michaels and David Michaels; great-niece, Samantha Friedberg; cousins, Malcolm (Marsha) Segelin, Diane, Elaine, Bobby, and Mikey Levin, Charlotte, Jeff, and Robbie Handler, Danielle Young, and Ryan Levin; and numerous devoted, terrific close friends. The family requests contributions be made to a cool charity of your choice in Mr. Friedberg’s memory.

Charles B. Jenefsky passed away on Dec. 30. Born on Oct. 1, 1929 in Dayton, Mr. Jenefsky move to Tucson, Ariz. at age 9. Mr. Jenefsky graduated from Tucson High and went on to receive his degree in architecture at Arizona State University — remaining forever dedicated as an ASU Sun Devil. Mr. Jenefsky proudly served in the U.S. Army and upon returning from Germany opened the doors to his fastener company, Industrial Bolt & Screw Supply, serving the valley for more than 30 years. He was a life member at Temple Beth Israel, the El Zaribah Shrine, volunteered for the USO, and touched many lives on his journey through life. Mr. Jenefsky is survived by daughters Susan Jenefsky and Mari Jenefsky-Titus; his favorite son-in-law, Donn-Allan; grandsons Sean and Jonathan; his brother Howard; and companion Beverly Louis. He will be greatly missed. May his memory be for a blessing. Contributions may be made in Mr. Jenefsky’s memory to Honor Flight Network, 300 E. Auburn Ave., Springfield, OH 45505 or to a charity of your choice.

Morton Nelson M.D., age 83 of Kettering, passed away on Dec. 23 at Kettering Hospital. Dr. Nelson was born Jan. 29, 1930 in Minneapolis to the late Solomon and Sarah (Earenberg) Nelson. He served in the U.S. Army from 1948-52, and later served in the U.S. Army Reserve in the Medical Corps, attaining the rank of lieutenant colonel. After his first discharge from the army in 1952, he attended UCLA and then the University of California, Irvine, from which he earned his M.D. He later earned a master’s in public health from UC Berkeley. He served as county health officer for Alameda and Orange Counties, Calif. before moving to Dayton in 1983 to become Montgomery County Health Commissioner. He served in this role for more than 20 years. During this time period and beyond, he also served as a professor at the Wright State School of Medicine. Dr. Nelson was married for 51 years to Lois (Miller) Nelson, and for nearly seven years to Roslyn Klein, both of whom preceded him in death, as did his brothers Kurt and Irving and sister Eta. He is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Steven Nelson and Monica Dillon-Nelson of Lisle, Ill., sister-in-law and husband Meri and David Bender of Los Angeles, stepdaughter and husband Ellen and Robert Rinsky of Cincinnati, stepgrandchildren Jessica and Ben, along with cousins, nieces, and nephews. Interment was at David’s Cemetery. Donations may be made to the American Lung Association, the American Heart Association, or any charity of the donor’s choice.

Ruth M. Rosset, age 92 of Dayton, passed away Dec. 18. Mrs. Rosset was an interior designer who worked on numerous commercial and residential sites. She was preceded in death by her husband Donald; her brothers, Louis, Arthur, Milton and Victor Marks. She is survived by her two daughters, Jill S. Rosset, M.D. ( John A. Fleishman, M.D.) and Anne M. Rosset; three grandchildren, Madisen Fleishman, Lauren (Brooks) Cronin and Adam Henry; brother Herbert Marks, numerous nieces, nephews and friends. Interment was at David’s Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Crossroads Hospice or the charity of your choice.

To read the complete February Dayton Jewish Observer, click here.

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