Helen Abrams


Helen Abrams passed away peacefully on Friday, Nov. 12th at the age of 102 of complications from COVID 19. She was born in Boston on June 1st, 1919, but considered herself “Rhode Island born and Rhode Island bred”. She loved summers at the beach at Narragansett, playing bridge, and playing golf at Potowomut Golf Club. She gave back to her community through her tireless activities starting as a Girl Scout leader, PTA member, a member of Hadassah, a charter member of the East Greenwich League of Women Voters and former President of the Cranston League of Women Voters.  She was instrumental in the development and implementation of the Cranston Home Rule Charter and, after her retirement, enjoyed delivering Meals On Wheels with her beloved late husband, Harold Abrams, to whom she was married for 69 years.  Upon moving to Wethersfield Commons in Warwick, she was known to have welcomed new neighbors and she organized an exercise class when she was in her 90’s. Helen grew up in East Greenwich, the daughter of the late Julius and Rachel (Brenner) Abrams. She graduated from the University of Rhode Island and moved to Cranston in 1953 with her young family. After returning to school to earn her teaching certificate, she taught English at Cranston High School East for 15 years. Helen and Hank had a long and healthy retirement during which they traveled the world and continued to learn and adapt to an ever changing world. Helen’s greatest joy was her family. She was the devoted mother of Anne Schwartz (David) of Richmond, VA, and Dr. Jane Abrams (Dr. John Paul MacDuffie) of Philadelphia, PA and Ellie Wasser (Dr. Marvin) of Cranston, and the dear sister of the late Jordan Abrams and Sara Frank. Her eight grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren have been nurtured, protected and inspired by her. Helen’s Jewish roots were centrally important to her. She was a member of Temple Sinai where, until recently, she was a regular participant in Torah study and religious services.  The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory may be made to Temple Sinai, 30 Hagen Avenue, Cranston, RI 02920. We will remember Helen donning her bathing cap and going for a swim in the cold New England waters at Narragansett Pier, swinging her golf club at Potowomut and presiding as beloved matriarch of her devoted family. Funeral services will be only for family at 12:30 on Sunday Nov. 14th. You can join us in this celebration of her life through Zoom. The link for this service is at templesinairi.org. Virtual Shiva will be held at 7:00PM on Sunday, Nov. 14th and the Zoom link for the Shiva will also be on templesinairi.org. For online condolences, please visit ShalomMemorialChapel.com.