Keith Paul Bartel
June 3, 1950–Feb. 19, 2014
Keith Paul Bartel, a notable Burlingame attorney who lived in Atherton since 1983, died on Feb. 19 at Stanford Hospital after a short battle with acute myeloid leukemia. He was 63 years old. He was a devoted husband and loving father and son.
Widely recognized for his expertise in estate and trust litigation and mediation, he also had a statewide reputation as a hearing officer in medical staff peer review administrative hearings. He was the recipient of numerous honors for his legal work, including Healthcare Lawyer of the Year for 2013, Northern California Super Lawyers for 2004 through 2014, and Best Lawyers of America 2008-2013. Keith’s memory was honored by the California Academy of Attorneys for Health Care Professionals in a tribute immediately after his death, and a tribute to Keith by California Society of Health Care Attorneys is also planned at their spring seminar the weekend of April 11 in Lake Tahoe.
Keith was born in Bat Yam, outside of Tel Aviv, Israel, to two Polish Jews who survived World War II and met in a displaced persons camp in the British sector of Germany. As part of only 10 percent of Polish Jews who survived the war, he called their meeting a miracle. As their only child, he maintained a lifelong devotion to Israel. When he was 10 he moved with his family to San Francisco.
Fluent in four languages, he earned his B.A. and M.A. degrees in political science from U.C. Berkeley and his J.D. from the University of San Francisco. An avid reader and traveler, he and his wife and family traveled widely throughout Eastern and Western Europe, Russia and the Baltics.
He is survived by his devoted wife of 36 years, Janice Ross, daughter Maya Bartel of San Francisco and mother Helena Brandt of Atherton. His son, Joshua Bartel, predeceased him.
A memorial service was held Feb. 23 at Hills of Eternity Cemetery in Colma. Donations in his memory may be made to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem or the Hebrew Free Loan Association of San Francisco.
Mary Louise (Ferer) Gross
Oct. 7, 1925–Feb. 18, 2014
Resident of Lafayette. Mary Louise (Ferer) Gross was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on Oct. 7, 1925 to Abraham Ferer and Goldee Marcus Ferer. She was the younger of two children. The family moved to California, where she met and married Alfred Gross in 1945. She was his devoted wife for over 68 years, until passing away peacefully on Feb. 18, 2014.
Mary Lou graduated in 1946 from the University of California, Berkeley, and became a teacher in the Oakland Unified School District. She was a loving mother to three children: Benton Gross (Mary Jane), Dr. Goldee Gross (Charles Sprague), Sandy Gross (Paula Reinman), and five grandchildren: Kelly Gross, Charlie and Abraham Sprague, and Lanny and Marlee Gross. Mary Lou was a life master bridge player and never met a child, or a dog, that she didn’t like.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the City of Hope, P.O. Box 513477, Los Angeles, CA 90051-3477.
On Feb. 20, 2014 at age 91, beloved wife of the late Nick Sarkany, loving mother of Ivan Sarkany and his wife Eva, dear grandmother of Sergio and Alex Sarkany, passed away in San Francisco. Funeral services were held Feb. 23 at Hills of Eternity Memorial Park, Colma. Contributions to Jewish Family and Children’s Services, 2150 Post St., SF, CA 94115.
Sinai Memorial Chapel (415) 921-3636
Natalie Harris Seliber
Was born Nov. 25, 1922 in Rock Island, Illinois, and passed away peacefully in San Mateo, California, on Feb. 13, 2014. Beloved wife of the late Joseph Seliber for 62 years, she is survived by her children Sherrie Friedman (Mel), Lloyd and June Seliber-Klein (Michael), grandchildren Shawn Seliber, Benji, Daniel and Jacob Friedman, Erica Klein and many nieces and nephews.
Natalie was the youngest of eight children. She received her B.S. and M.A. degrees in speech from Northwestern University. She taught public speaking and family communication at Roosevelt University in Chicago and Indiana University in Gary, Ind.
During her later years, Natalie developed a passion for sleep education and research and became the editor for the newsletter “Sleep and Health.”
Natalie loved life, cherished her family and friends and lived by the Golden Rule. She will be in our hearts always.
Janice Viner Selix
Was born Oct. 17, 1919, and passed away peacefully on Feb. 21, 2014 after a brief illness. She was predeceased by her parents, Rose and Phillip Viner, her husband, Alfred Selix, and her brothers Irving and “Bud” Viner.
She was born in Stockton, California, and at age 6 moved to San Francisco where she lived for the rest of her life. She was warm, gracious, proud, caring and artistic. She continually gave of herself and generously contributed to those in need. Always a lady, she possessed a wonderfully dry sense of humor from her father’s English roots.
She lived a full and active life into her 90s and prided herself in maintaining a lovely, comfortable home surrounded by beauty. Her grandchildren called her Mom, Granny Janny, GJ and GGJ and thought she was the coolest grandmother around.
She is survived by her daughters Lynn Blankfort (Steven Martin) and Susan Karsh (Randy), her grandchildren Robin Nedzi (Eric), Todd Blankfort (Naomi Gray), Greg Karsh, Casey Perry (Brett), and six great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Janice Selix made to Congregation Shir Shalom (252 W. Spain St., Sonoma, CA 95476), Global Down Syndrome (3300 East First Ave. #390, Denver, CO) or the charity of your choice would be appreciated.
Elise Marion Stevens
Elsie Marion Stevens, nee Altmann, was born in Germany in 1915 and passed away on Jan. 26, 2014 at the age of 99.
She came to America in 1942 and was married to Bernard Stevens, who predeceased her in 1962.
Elsie was a kind woman who loved the outdoors, travel and classical music. She lived for decades in her home close to Stonestown Mall.
Elsie is survived by her two nieces Vivian Turner and Joyce Polonsky and their families as well as many friends.
Special thanks to Diane Buroff at the Tamalpias assisted-living facility in Greenbrae who provided her with expert care.
David W. Terris
In San Francisco on Feb. 23, 2014 at age 78.
Beloved husband of Susan Terris for 55 years; loving father of Dan (Maggie Stern), Michael (Maureen), and Amy (Dave Orgish); devoted grandfather of Ben (Rachel Pfeffer), Eli, Sophie (Riley Weissenborn), Theo, Jake, Spencer, Noah, Sam, Charlie, Becca, Paul and Abby; dear brother of Bruce and the late Ann Rooke-Ley.
David was born in Detroit, Michigan, the second child of Charles and Ruth Terris. He attended Grosse Pointe High School and Harvard University. At Harvard, he met Susan Dubinsky, whom he married in St. Louis, Missouri in 1958. The couple moved to San Francisco, where David began a career of nearly 50 years as a stockbroker, working in succession for E.F. Hutton, J. Barth, Dean Witter and Morgan Stanley, from which he retired in 2007. His dedication to the personal and financial well-being of his clients made him one of the leaders in his industry, a perennial member of the Chairman’s Club at both Dean Witter and Morgan Stanley.
Outside the office, David excelled as an athlete, from his days as a basketball star at Grosse Pointe High, through his graceful and competitive play for many years on the courts of the California Tennis Club. By far his greatest passion was for family; he will be fondly remembered by 12 adoring grandchildren who knew him as their “Gump.”
Memorial services will be held on Sunday, March 2 at Congregation Emanu-El, San Francisco. In lieu of flowers, donations to the San Francisco–Marin Food Bank (900 Pennsylvania Ave., San Francisco, CA 94107, www.sfmfoodbank.org), or to the International Center for Ethics, Justice, and Public Life at Brandeis University (MS 086 Waltham, MA 02554-9110, www.brandeis.edu/ethics), would be kindly appreciated.
Sinai Memorial Chapel (415) 921-3636
Barbara Berelson Wiltsek
Nov. 3, 1933–Feb. 16, 2014
A second-generation and lifelong resident of San Francisco, Bobbi passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family. Predeceased by her parents, Clarice and David B. Berelson, Bobbi is survived by her husband of 57 years, Herb, their three daughters, Nancy (Gregory Mendez), Susan and Dana (Al Johnson), two grandsons, Zachary and Tate Johnson, brother David Berelson (Riva), sister-in-law Berta Speisman, numerous cousins, nieces, nephews and many, many friends.
A graduate of Lowell and Cal (class of 1955), Bobbi was a force of nature whose zest for life kept her active and on the go for all of her 80 years, until her cancer diagnosis last November. Smart and savvy with an incredible sense of humor, Bobbi was a business owner, art collector, tennis player, skier, poker player and a bridge life master. Her early life was marked by her love of horses and dogs, from her first collie Bonnie to her miniature poodle Cassie, who hardly left her side during her illness.
In 1964, Bobbi opened the Little Gallery on Union Street with Noel Hanford, at a time when it was unusual for women to own a business; the opening was noted in the Chronicle and she was profiled in the Examiner in a feature about women entrepreneurs. Bobbi’s commitment to supporting the careers of young artists led her to endow the annual MFA exhibition at the U.C. Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive where she also served on the board. Besides Tahoe and contemporary art, Bobbi’s greatest love was her family, especially her grandsons. She will be missed, never forgotten. The family wishes to thank Dr. Kevin Knopf, Dr. Marilyn Kutzscher, Hospice by the Bay, and her caregivers Lily and Kalo. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the Berkeley Art Museum would be appreciated (BAM/PFA, Attn: Development, P.O. Box 4796, Berkeley, CA 94704-9943).