IN MEMORIAM – 2018
Magdalene Benedict / Manhattan Chapter
Elvira (Vira) Bernstein / Miami Chapter
Anita Irene Hedvall Hildner / Portland Chapter
Jay Koren / Los Angeles Chapter
January 9, 2018
Magdalene Benedict (nee Schaefer) of Norwood passed away on January 9, 2018. Beloved wife of Michael. Devoted sister of Barbara Peters. Magdalene was a flight attendant for both Pan American World Airways and Delta Air Lines. She was a member of the Englewood Field Club.
ELVIRA “VIRA” BERNSTEIN
September 17, 1944 – January 18, 2018
Elvira “Vira” Bernstein , age 73, of Miami, FL passed away of natural causes in Jacksonville, FL January 18th. She was born in the Dominican Republic on September 17, 1944. Vira was happily married to Dr. Stuart Bernstein for 29 years and widowed recently for three years.
She had a long fulfilling career as a flight attendant with National Airlines, Pan Am Airways, and United Airlines. Her true passion in life was to serve others and make people happy. She enjoyed traveling with her husband and visiting family and friends. She also loved cooking and entertaining.
Vira is survived by her sister Victoria Phillips-Echelberger and husband Larry Echelberger, nice Cristina Echeverry and her husband Gus Echeverry, great-niece Silvia Echeverry, brother Marino Julio de la Rocha II, nephew Marino Julio de la Rocha III and nice Gina de la Rocha Goico.
ANITA IRENE HEDVALL HILDNER
October 16, 1942 – January 1, 2018
Anita died at Kaiser Sunnyside Hospital on January 1, 2018 of complications with pneumonia and COPD. She was 75.
Anita was born on October 16, 1942 in Malmö, Sweden to her parents Gösta & Ingeborg Hedvall. As a child, she enjoyed summers in Skåne with her siblings and grandparents. She was a nanny, tour guide in the Canary Islands, and worked at the Malmö airport before joining Pan Am as a flight attendant in 1968. She moved to Chicago and met Jono Hildner, whom she married in 1970 in Malmö. Together, they moved to Oregon in 1971, and in 1973 welcomed their first son, Jason Hedvall. In 1977 their second son, Benjamin Truxtun was born, and Anita retired from Pan Am to raise her boys. While she was a dedicated mother, she also fostered a passion for travel and exotic beadwork. This led her to begin working at The Eye of Ra, a shop specializing in clothing and jewelry from around the world at John’s Landing in Portland. She and Jono divorced in 1989. Her passion for travel and her work at the store helped her visit many countries. In her life, she traveled to Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, Tahiti, Tonga, New Zealand, Fiji, Guam, Philippines, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea Thailand, Burma, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Lebanon, Turkey, Kenya, Uganda, Cote D’ Ivoire, Liberia, Western Sahara, Morocco, and nearly all of Western Europe.
Anita is survived by her sister Kerstin and brother Claes in Sweden and her son and daughter-in-law, Jason and Traci Hildner; her son and daughter-in-law, Ben Hildner and Tatiana Hernández de Hildner; and her two grandsons, Lucas and Martín Hildner Hernández.
January 5, 2018
Los Angeles Chapter
In his long flying career, Jay was part of several “Moments of Pan Am History”. On October 26, 1958 he was the junior crew member on the inaugural flight of the 707 from Idlewild to Paris. Then on January 22, 1970, he was the In- Flight Service Director on the inaugural flight of the 747 from JFK to London. At Pan Am he had many special assignments. Jay created the “patterns” and bid-lines for crew scheduling at JFK. One of Jay’s uniforms is on display at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C. After retiring in 1986 Jay wrote his book The Company We Kept chronicling his Pan Am memories and experiences. He also participated in several “Parade of Uniforms” events organized by World Wings. Jay was a Pan Am icon and we will miss him.
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