Merrily Wallach

Merrily Wallach

1922 - 2020

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Obituary of Merrily Wallach

Merrily Cohen Wallach, age 98 and ¾, died peacefully at home on Thursday night, December 10.


Merrily and her beloved Sy (husband of 63 years) bought four homes, moving for the birth of each child. South Jasmine Street was a hub for her children's friends, Arthur Murray lessons, poker, mah jong, plays and rehearsals, and myriad celebrations for over sixty years. Politics were personal with Merrily. She lived to vote in November, never missing an election in 77 years.


In addition to her love of family, Merrily was best known for her love of theatre.  She had a strong local presence, was co-founder of the NCJW's Children's Traveling Theatre, a love that was central to her life for nearly 60 years. Merrily directed and acted in many plays brought to schools where children may have otherwise not had an opportunity to see them. Life long friendships blossomed. She co-directed Shwayder Theatre at the JCC with Evelyn Tucker, bringing laughter and tears to the stage with actors of all ages and abilities. Her SAG membership, Bonfils and dinner theatre performances were richly rewarding.


Merrily was confident and a confidant. Her cousins, nieces and nephews adored her as did their parents before them. Friendships were essential to Merrily. Each grandchild and great grandchild brought her great and abiding joy. A lover of words, she dabbled in poetry--the perfect ditty for any occasion; crosswords, Words with Friends and Facebook, where she found sustaining connections with new and old friends, family, and always, the right words.


Merrily's last act was phenomenal. She was the heart of the family from the early days as the youngest of three, until her death. She dug deep to profess her love, make sure each of her survivors heard her wish to exit prior to her stellar cognitive abilities waning and while her weakening body no longer obeyed her. She wanted to be remembered for her kindness and caring, for her humor and her love. She laughed a lot in her last weeks. She asked for medical aid in dying, never wavering in her decision. Her doctors were in awe. She died with zero fear, completely aware, eloquently communicative, and love radiating from every pore. Her children were not surprised by her easy exit in the knowledge that she was courageously modeling her approach to life and death.


Merrily is survived by the children she thanked for motherhood: Andrew Wallach (Maureen VanNorden), Deanne Kapnik (Stephen) Joan Wallach (Arthur Rosenblum) and Daniel Wallach (Cate Hart), seven extraordinary grandchildren, their families, including ten great grandchildren.



Donations gratefully can be made to Medical Aid in Dying at Denver Health (Call Karin McBride at 303 602 7548 or Denver Health Foundation


or The Denver Hospice (


Service information:

A private graveside service was held, Sunday, 1:45pm; Public Livestream available on Feldman Mortuary’s YouTube Channel. A memorial service will be held on March 4th—information pending.

 Click here for: Feldman Mortuary’s YouTube Channel

 Services and shiva (request zoom link by emailing Stephen Kapnik:

   Zoom Evening Services Sunday – Friday 5:00 pm

   Deanne’s Family will be on Zoom for Shiva Sunday – Friday morning

   9:00-12:00 pm and 4:30-6:00 pm Sunday – Thursday.