Life Story for
The family writes --
Florence (Kohn, Greenstein) Schwartz, 97, of Hilton Head, S.C., formerly of Union and Short Hills, N.J., died peacefully at home of natural causes, on June 26, 2018, surrounded by her loving family.
Florence was the daughter of Anna (Sass) and Meyer Kohn of South Orange, N.J. Born on July 3, 1920, she was the third child of Anna and Meyer. Her brother, Leo Kohn, became a beloved physician in their hometown for over four decades. Her older sister, Hazel, died two years before she was born, in the 1918 influenza pandemic.
Florence was raised in South Orange, except for a few years in the late '20s and early '30s. During the hard times of the Great Depression, her family moved to Chicago, where her father was able to obtain work in his profession, corset designing. After his untimely death in 1932, the family returned to South Orange. Florence graduated from Columbia High School in 1938, with excellent grades, but was unable to attend college due to her family's financial situation. She went to work in Bamberger's, Newark, N.J., and in 1942, met and married the love of her life, Jacob (Jack) Greenstein, an attorney, who later ended up in the family hardware business when his father was seriously injured.
The Greenstein family lived in Union from the 1940s, where she and Jack raised their children, Marjorie and Richard. Florence was active in community affairs: Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts leader, PTA, Hadassah, and League of Women Voters, and was trustee of Union Senior Citizen Housing Corporations.
When the children were older, she worked in the family business - Union Paint & Hardware Co., which later changed its name to Home Beautiful when Florence urged the business to start adding housewares and gifts. The business was very successful, attracting both local and distant customers to its Union Center location. Florence loved doing the buying for the business and dressing the windows for Christmas and the other seasons. The business was sold upon Jack's death in 1980. Although not having the benefit of a college education, she was a voracious reader, loved solving NY Times crossword puzzles, and possessed a brilliant mind, tempered with common sense and loving compassion.
In 2014, Florence moved to Hilton Head Island, S.C., where her daughter and granddaughter live. Together they formed a family compound, all residing in houses next door and across the street from one another in Sea Pines Plantation. Florence was a member of the HHI Senior Citizens and a respected partner in several HHI duplicate bridge groups.
Florence was predeceased by her parents, Anna and Meyer Kohn; her brother, Dr. Leo Kohn; her husband, Jack Greenstein; her former husband, Sidney Schwartz; her son-in-law, Ronald Proudman, and step grandson, Ronald Proudman. She is survived by her son, Richard Greenstein (Irene) of Westfield, N.J.; daughter, Marjorie Proudman of Hilton Head Island; grandchildren, Suzanne Vogel (Daniel), Jonathan Greenstein, Douglas Proudman (Yoshie), Jennifer Proudman (Steven Schucker), and Sara Callen (Scott); step-grandchildren, Mark Proudman (Patti), Barry Proudman (Maureen), and David Proudman (Mary), and great-grandchildren, Sloan, Sadie and Sawyer Callen, Jake and Luke Proudman, Poppy and Marley Schucker, and Ari and Jonah Vogel. She is also survived by step great-grandchildren, Matthew, Timothy (Andrea), Barry, Christopher, Charlie, Jack, and Katie Proudman, and Lindsay Yanuzzelli (James) and Brittany Meagher (Corey) and step great great-grandchildren, Lily and Penny Yanuzzelli.
Contributions in her memory may be made to: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation- JDRF, teamari.net; Hospice Care of the Low Country hospicecarelc.org/donate; and glioblastoma research, glioblastomafoundation.org