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Judith Miriam Kanell

Oct 17, 2020

Judith Miriam Kanell passed away on October 6, 2020 at the age of 97 with family by her side. She was born in New Haven, CT on June 6, 1923, daughter of Rebecca and Abraham Selkovitz. She was the youngest of three children. Her brother Reynold and sister Evelyn predeceased her.

Judy’s beloved husband of 53 years, Theodore (Ted) Kanell, died in 2001. They began life together in New Haven, spent 12 years in Los Angeles, CA, and eventually landed in Nashua, NH, where they lived for about 40 years. Judy spent her last 18 years at Brooksby Village in Peabody, MA.

In her youth, Judy trained as a nurse and also worked a short while at the New Haven Phone Company before becoming a mother. She always maintained being a mom was her greatest pleasure. She had several interests that included designing her homes, skillful sewing and other fiber arts, collecting antiques, gardening, cooking hearty meals, riding her trusty old bike, enjoying all four seasons, the ocean and the beautiful lakes of New Hampshire. She loved the color green.

Judy was known for her dry sense of humor, straight-forward style, practical approach to life, and strong work ethic. It was not unusual to find her cooking in quantity late at night – briskets, cabbage rolls, honey cakes, strudel – stocking a large freezer well before they became popular. She was the first among her friends to trade skirts for slacks in the early 1950s and also cut her hair short.

Judy will forever be remembered by her loving family: daughter Arlene K. Seldin of Amherst, MA (and husband Clement); son Robert A. Kanell of Ridgewood, NJ (and wife Shari); and son Brian E. Kanell of Andover, MA (and wife Nancy). Her grandchildren were a great source of pride for her: Benjamin, Catherine, Andrew, Sarah, Emma, Sidney, Talia, Brooke, Troy and great grandchild Maya. Aunt Judy had 19 nieces and nephews.

The family extends special thanks to Judy’s nurses and devoted caretakers, especially her primary aide, Tongyol Russo, whose competence and compassion are deeply appreciated.

Given the COVID pandemic, the service will be private and take place at the New Hampshire State Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen, NH.

In lieu of flowers, donations honoring Judy’s memory can be sent to:

Care Dimensions (Hospice) 75 Sylvan Street, B-102 Danvers, MA 01923 or to any organization supporting the welfare of children.