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A Passion for Education and Family

This year the High School Alumnae/i Association was the beneficiary of a very generous bequest and IRA distribution from Vera Julia Gordon '47, who passed away last August.

After graduating from Hunter College High School, Vera went on to attend Hunter College (B.A. English Literature), Columbia University (MA), and was ABD from NYU. She became an English teacher at Washington Irving High School in New York City, and was appointed assistant principal before her retirement. (While she would have liked being principal, she knew that, in those times, becoming principal didn't happen for women.) As AP she missed teaching but liked being able to make a difference in policy.

Image of Vera Gordon
Vera Gordon's gift will have a lasting impact on our future.

Vera was a lifelong resident of Brooklyn, and was, for many years, an active volunteer at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden as a Garden Guide and at their annual plant sale. She practiced Tai Chi and took painting classes there. (Vera was a gifted botanical watercolorist.) She also volunteered on the Holiday Decorating Committee at the Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, was an enthusiastic bird watcher and gardener, an avid reader, knitter and was also a member of the Brooklyn Chapter of the Embroiderers' Guild of America.

But most of all, Vera was all about education. While she never had children of her own, she had a very large family with six first cousins and was very close to her nephews and nieces. She is remembered as having helped anyone in the family who wanted to go to college and even gave gifts to those children who got a 4.0 average in school! She was very invested in family and was present for the children. Her cousin recalls that there was always a teaching moment: She remembered Vera walking on the beach in Maine with her nephew. They came upon a dead fish, stood and studied it for a while, and then she asked him, "How do you think it died?" This led to a very long discussion.

Vera will be remembered as a very independent, precise and strong woman with exceptionally dry humor. She took her last class at the BBG in fall 2017 and had to resign as class coordinator for her 70th reunion in December 2016 because of her illness. Her gift, which included a bequest and an IRA distribution, will make it possible for the Alumnae/i Association to better serve the students and alumni of Hunter College High school.

You, like Vera, can make a lasting impact at the Alumnae/i Association with a planned gift. For help finding the right gift for you, contact Eniko Horvath at ehorvath@hchsaa.org or 212.396.6718.