September 24, 1926 – January 14, 2011
“Be strong and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for and hope for, and expect the Lord.” Psalm 31:24
Vera Kuschnir went home to be with her Lord on January 14, 2011. Her death came unexpectedly and her family feels deep sorrow and profound loss. Beloved wife of Stanley (Stach) to whom she was married for 64 years; she is also survived by her four children, Anna DeCarlo, Nina Warner, Eugene Kuschnir and Irene Jacks; 12 grandchildren, and 4 great-grandchildren. Her 3 sisters, Lydia Zuill, Irene Hoefer, and Katie Shahariw as well as a large extended family also survive Vera.
Vera was born in Donetsk, Ukraine in 1926 to Eugenia and Sergei Abramow. The early years of her life were a mix of joyous family times and the harsh realities of living under the Soviet Regime. She and her family fled the German Nazi occupation of their homeland and miraculously survived the ravages of war in Europe. They ended up in Germany where they lived as refugees until being liberated by the Americans in 1945. She married Stach in 1946. The entire family migrated to the United States in stages; Vera and Stach came in 1949 and settled in Los Angeles.
Vera was a published poet, writer, translator, speaker and teacher. She had a radio ministry that brought Christian programs to the former USSR. She was widely known, respected and beloved in the Russian Evangelical community throughout the United States, Russia and the Ukraine. After moving to Santa Barbara in 1969, Vera also became involved with the American European Bethel Mission (AEBM), which was founded by her maternal grandfather, Leon Rosenberg. She served on the Board of directors and was a true figurehead and inspiration for the work of the AEBM in Israel.
She lived to see the re-establishment of the AEBM work in the Ukraine, Germany and a beginning in Poland.
She was “Vera Kuschnir” with an admiring, loving public – but to us she was just our “mama”.
A Memorial Service is planned to honor Vera on January 29, 2011, 1:00 pm at Calvary Baptist Church, 736 West Islay, Santa Barbara, CA, 93101. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Vera Kuschnir Memorial Fund, AEBM, 1911 De la Vina #D, Santa Barbara, CA 93101 – (805) 569-0016.