A Tribute to Chris Mankowitz

The Arizona Daily Star wants close to $400 for a one day obituary about my sister Chris. Four hundred smackers! I would rather send a few kids to summer camp with the money, and I know Chris would agree. After all, we are our father’s daughters, and Walter knew how to squeeze a nickel.


After six months of hell and hope, Chris lost the fight with esophageal cancer on Monday, May 12. Reluctantly, Chris left us. She did not say good-bye to my husband Richard or to her nephew Greg, or to any of her friends. She slipped away and quietly began the inevitable journey. Chris was born in an Elizabeth, New Jersey maternity home to Walter and Mary Lulic. She earned her RN degree at Newark City Hospital in the days when hospitals ran 3-year nursing programs. She went on to Fairleigh Dickinson University for a BS degree. Chris enjoyed the challenge of critical care nursing and worked at Beth Israel Hospital in Newark for several years. She married at age 25 and with her husband moved to the Florida Keys. She had many fun years of fishing, snorkeling, tennis, golf, watercolor classes, and her beloved Doberman, Leba – whose name translated to “Leave Barry Alone.” When Chris had no choice but to divorce, she got in the Mercedes and drove straight to our home in Tucson. Chris worked in hotel hospitality and was a concierge at the Westin La Paloma until the Big-C attacked her esophagus. Ever generous, she donated her body to Research for Life. As a family, we give accolades of praise to Casa de la Luz for their in-home hospice care. A scholarship will be established in her name at the University of Arizona School of Nursing.  Farewell Chrissy dear, you are loved, missed, and forever remembered.

Chris in faux fur
Chris in faux fur

13 thoughts on “A Tribute to Chris Mankowitz

  1. Aroline Coates July 13, 2014 / 6:28 pm

    Just read your blog. It made me laugh cry, smile and remember all the good times I was lucky enough to have shared with
    Chris. Thinking of you with love. Aroline


  2. Sue Demaras May 25, 2014 / 7:37 am

    Chris,so talented, so humorous, so lovely. A ray of sunshine went out of my life when you left the keys, however your star will shine in my heart until we meet again!


  3. Pamela May 22, 2014 / 5:12 pm

    Susan…..Chris was an angel of a friend she shed many good times and much laughter among her friends….she will be missed by all. I feel that she is in the arms of the angel’s now to be delivered to God!!!! she will be a blessing in heaven as she was on earth. We shared very close birthday’s me on the 3-13 so, we always celebrated with each year….she will be missed by me….Love to all, Pamela


  4. Carl Mankowitz May 21, 2014 / 8:24 am

    Condolences to you, Susan and Greg. Chris was a wonderful sister-in-law; we kept in touch after she moved to Tucson, and I was glad Zachary had a chance to meet her. May her memory be a blessing. Carl Mankowitz


  5. Dorrie May 20, 2014 / 2:51 pm

    Dear Susan,

    Didn’t realize at first that this comment was about what I wrote. You know I meant it.

    Call me when you feel like talking. I’m concerned about you. Hope all is well.

    Hugs, Dorrie


  6. Little Sis May 19, 2014 / 9:48 am

    Lovely, wonderfully written tribute about Chris. She is smiling!!!!


  7. Dorrie and Lee Finberg May 18, 2014 / 12:28 pm

    Dearest Susan, Richard and Greg,
    We are so very sorry that your dear Chris has departed this life for another adventure in another place.
    No one could have had more love or care than Chris did during her battle. You have the peace of knowing that everything that could be done was done and that she had her loved ones with her when it counted most.
    Chris is at peace and we wish the same for you Susan and Richard and Greg.
    Dorrie and Lee


  8. Luba Chliwniak May 16, 2014 / 9:53 am

    Susan and Richard,
    I am certain Chris is looking down with gratitude for the final months she spent with you, knowing she could not have been in better hands and caring hearts. Your tributes is lovely.


  9. Rosa May 16, 2014 / 6:11 am

    Chris brought fun and smiles to every encounter. I just know she is joyful in her new life, and she wouldn’t want you to be sad for long. You and Richard have Chris loving care 24/7, and made her journey bearable. Take comfort in knowing her body is at rest and her spirit is celebrating.


  10. Susan May 15, 2014 / 6:10 pm

    I did not know Chris, but you have a wonderful way to describe her. Peace to you and Richard during this time of grieving.


  11. Richard and Joann May 15, 2014 / 5:06 pm

    Betsy – thanks for saying thanks to Susan and Richard – I will continue to think of Chris always – until she and I meet again – we’ll have Italian and a glass of wine! BINGO! AND THANKS CHRIS FOR ALL YOU GAVE TO EVERYONE! ALWAYS!!


  12. Richard and Joann May 15, 2014 / 9:17 am

    I will miss Chris so very much – please know how much Richard and I loved her – thanks Susan for sending this to us.


  13. Betsy Ehnts May 15, 2014 / 2:25 am

    Thank you Susan for such a lovely tribute. So very hard to say goodbye. Prayers of healing for you and Richard as you have suffered in this as well. She couldn’t have asked for more loving and compassionate caregivers. See you on the other side, dear friend! ♥♥♥


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