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Norman Nathaniel Hanenbaum
December 6, 1927 ~ September 11, 2022 (age 94) 94 Years Old
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Norman Hanenbaum, 94, of Middletown, passed peacefully on 9-11-2022. Norman was born December 6, 1927, in Baltimore, MD, to Israel & Rose Hanenbaum. He attended Baltimore City Schools, and after high school, enlisted in the US Marine Corps. After returning from the military he attended University of Hartford, Hartt School of Music, graduating in 1957. He then went to work at Wethersfield High School until 1966, at which time he became interested in Special Education. He returned to U of H for his Masters in Special Education. Upon completion, he began a 25 year career teaching in Hartford public schools. In 1969, he was part of 15 Special Ed teachers who formed the Connecticut Special Olympics, where he remained an active volunteer for over 35 years.
In 1972, he organized a talented group of special needs musicians. With Norman leading on the keyboard, the group was known as the Alleluia Players. They would perform dozens of times per year for Special Olympic events, even performing at the Kennedy Center. Norm purchased a van and equipment for the group. He would spend several hours picking up the musicians, performing with them, taking them out to eat with his own money, and driving them home. Norman’s generous dedication of time and resources to the group is a testament to the kind of person he was.
Norm was elected Post Commander of the Jewish war veterans Post 51 for two years, as well as Commander of the CT Department of Jewish War Veterans for an additional two years. He was inducted into the CT Veterans Hall of Fame at the State Capitol in 2012 by the Lieutenant Governor.
Norm created a Klezmere Band at Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe in Chester, leading it for 20 years. As an active professional saxophone musician, every Tuesday evening, he played in the George Manston ‘Big’ Band at the Westbrook Elks Club. He always said, “I have made numerous contributions to the community, I count my blessings and am thankful I can make a
He is survived by his daughter Marcy (Tom) Wien of Newport Beach, CA; son Barry (Helaine) Hanenbaum of West Hartford; grandchildren Curt (Lindy) and Haley Hanenbaum; Cara and Ethan Wien; sister Zelda Zaben of Baltimore, MD; brother Dr. Allen (Susan) Hanenbaum of Potomac, MD; and several nieces and nephews.
Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, September 14, at 12:00 pm, at Congregation Adath Israel Synagogue, 8 Broad Street in Middletown. Burial will follow in the State Veterans Cemetery where full military honors will be accorded. Donations may be made to Special Olympics of CT, and Jewish War Veterans. To share memories or send condolences to the family, please visit www.doolittlefuneralservice.com.