Eleanor Bienstock, 92, Chapel Hill, NC, passed away peacefully at the Duke Hock Family Pavilion Hospice, on Thursday, March 6, 2014. She is survived by her daughter, Dr. Rachelle Bienstock of Chapel Hill, NC (Scott Snyder), and her two sons Rabbi Arnold Bienstock of Salisbury, MD and Jeffrey Bienstock (Linda) of Queens, NY. She is also survived by her six granddaughters - Julia and Shira Snyder (Chapel Hill, NC) and Levana, Meira, Mazal, (NY, NY) and Hadas Bienstock (Salisbury, MD). Her beloved husband of 45 years, Julius Jerry Bienstock predeceased her in 1994.
Eleanor Bienstock loved her life as a quintessential New Yorker as she relished the sights, sounds, and smells of the Big Apple. She matured during the Great Depression as a student at Thomas Jefferson High School in Brooklyn, New York and obtained her B.A. in English and elementary school education from Brooklyn College. She also completed graduate courses at City College in Manhattan. She worked for an international trade company and the Draft Board (during WWII) before beginning her career as an elementary school teacher in the New York City Public School System.
Eleanor gave up her full-time teaching career to raise her three children. She later returned to education as a substitute-school teacher. She was the beloved “preferred” substitute school teacher at Parsons Junior High School No. 168 in Queens for many years. She was a devoted member of Israel Center of Hillcrest Manor in Queens NY where she served as religious school secretary and choir member.
Relocating to Chapel Hill after the death of her husband, Eleanor created a new life for herself by becoming an active member of the Chapel Hill Senior Center and the Durham-Chapel Hill JFS Chaverim Group and The Chapel Hill Kehillah. She was an RSVP School reading volunteer at Glenwood Elementary School for several years. She enjoyed the culture opportunities at the University of North Carolina, as she was a devotee of music and the arts. Her greatest pleasure was watching her North Carolina granddaughters, Julia and Shira, grow to maturity and attend their school events.
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The family expresses its sincere appreciation to the aides and med techs at Wynwood Assisted Living, Chapel Hill and the compassionate staff of the Duke Hock Pavilion Hospice for their exceptional care. Deepest thanks to Dr. Margaret Helton, UNC Family Practice, whose medical insight allowed Eleanor to reach the age of 92. Special thanks to family friend Susan Saltzberg for all the support she has given through some difficult times.
Contributions may be offered to the American Diabetes Association, Fountain House, NYC and Durham-Chapel Hill JFS Chaverim Program in Eleanor’s memory, as these were her special charities.
Funeral services were held at Howerton and Bryan in Durham, NC on Sunday, March 9, 2014 at 1:30 pm. Committal was at the Beth Moses Cemetery in Farmington, LI, New York.