Margaret Kushner, 97 died Sept. 15, 2010, at her home.

She leaves behind her devoted and much loved husband, Ben Kushner, and her children, twins Lisa Kushner and her husband, Patrick Walsh, of Morrill and Richard Kushner and his wife, Carol, of Brooklyn, N.Y., daughter Karen Wolberger and her husband, Lionel, of Jerusalem; her grandchildren and their families; Silas Walsh and Danielle Mayer of Belfast, Jasper and Bryn Walsh of Newburgh, Jake Naso Kushner, Louise Kushner and Skyler Riggs, and Kevin Kushner of Brooklyn, N.Y., and Roslyn, Michael and Amitai Wolberger of Jerusalem; a special great-grandchild, Cora Grace, of Brooklyn; and a brother, Eugene Stramiello, of New Jersey.

Marge was predeceased by three sisters, Marie Ellis, Viola Cuneo and Josephine Straffacci of Brooklyn, N.Y.

A vibrant and passionate woman, Marge had a lifelong, deep appreciation for music. Always interested in the piano, she took lessons in her later years and entertained at area nursing homes. She practiced almost daily until several months ago. It was a great source of joy to her, she believed people throughout the world could be positively connected through music.

As a young woman, Marge worked as an administrative assistant to a progressive city councilman in New York City, helped organize a union for government workers in Washington, D.C., and as a young mother organized day camps and programs for families.

She was an early feminist and supporter of the rights of women. She worked as a medical secretary for many years for several orthopedists in the New York area and freely gave accurate orthopedic advice. Always highly organized and efficient, she had several favorite sayings which her family will remember her by, one of which was “there are certain minimal standards.” She was a remarkable Italian cook, and “never cooked a bad meal” by her husband’s reckoning.

Marge and Ben moved to the Belfast area in the late 1980s and were grateful for their community of friends here. They traveled for many winters to Mexico and then to Florida.

The family is especially appreciative of the people who cared for Marge in her later years, and for the warmth and love extended to her.

A private family gathering took place Sept. 19. A celebration of the lives of Marge and Ben will be held at a later date. Close friends are encouraged to call the house to see if Ben would appreciate a visit.

Anyone wishing to make a donations in memory of Marge can do so to the New England Conservatory of Music, 290 Huntingon Ave., Boston, MA 02115, or online at http://necmusicedu/give to support “El Sistema USA”, a program that provides musical instruments and training to disadvantaged children.