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Memorial for Ruth Kagan

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Graveside: 2:30 PM Wednesday, June 9th, 2021
Hills of Eternity Memorial Park
1301 El Camino Real
Colma, CA 94014
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Memorial Contribution: Jewish Family & Children’s Services or Hadassah

March 30, 1927 – June 5, 2021

Loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and treasured friend Ruth Kagan (née Kronberger), 94, passed away peacefully from natural causes at her home in San Francisco on June 5, 2021.

Ruth was born in Chodau, Czechoslovakia to Ida and Walter Kronberger. At the age of 12, she fled the Nazis with her cousin, Kurt Stern, on a kindertransport rescue mission organized by Nicholas Winton. They found safety in the care of Hilda and Wesley Nunn, Methodist farmers in Redgrave, England. A determined young woman from the start, Ruth acclimated quickly to the new culture, learning English in addition to her native Czech and German. At 17 she moved to London where she worked as a secretary for the Jewish Agency. Within a couple of years, she made her way to Israel where she reunited with her brother Avram Kronberger, learned her fourth language, and served as a radar operator for the Israel Defense Forces. In 1948 she married Sholly Kagan, with whom she had three children -- the delight of her life. Her marriage ended in 1975. She later spent many years in partnership with Julian Natanson and cherished their blended family. Ruth excelled in her work as an administrator for Brandeis University and the Harvard School of Public Health and also found meaning through avid volunteer work for many community organizations over the years.

In addition to London, Israel, Toronto, Boston, and Dallas, Ruth lived in San Rafael and San Francisco for the last 20 years. In every setting she was known for her gracious hospitality. Relationships were her top priority and in addition to being a wonderful correspondent with faraway friends and family, she continued to open herself to deep friendships at each chapter of her life – even in her final two years at Rhoda Goldman Plaza where she created close bonds.

Ruth is survived by her devoted children Walt and Kathie Kagan, Ron Kagan and Renia Harris, Lida and David Morgenstein, and Susie Volk Kagan; loving step-children Roberta and Dick Bauer, Barb and Doug Crockett, and Sara and Steve Silva. She was adored by her grandchildren Avi and Merav Kagan, Sarah and Gabe Treves-Kagan, Nina and Orly Morgenstein, and Samantha and Sedona King along with great-grandchildren Dor and Sivan Kagan, and Neko and Aida Treves-Kagan.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Jewish Family & Children’s Services or Hadassah.