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Jewish Life Stories: A pioneering women comic book artist, a British children’s book author who raised three Israeli sons

Trina Robbins, 85, the first woman to draw a full issue of “Wonder Woman”

Trina Robbins grew up in Brooklyn, the daughter of Jewish immigrants from Belarus. Her mother, a New York city school teacher, would bring home “an endless supply of 8½” by 11” Board of Education paper and No. 2 pencils, from which I would chew off the erasers.”

Those freebies inspired a lifelong obsession with drawing, design and comic books: In the 1960s Robbins befriended and designed clothes for a bevy of rock stars, selling her fashions at her Broccoli boutique in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village.

Turning to comics, Robbins drew “It Aint Me Babe,” the first comic book made exclusively by women; became, in 1985, the first woman to draw a full issue of “Wonder Woman”; and founded, in 1994, Friends of Lulu, a women’s comic book collective.

A historian of comics, her books included “Pretty in Ink: North American Women Cartoonists 1896-2013” (2013).

In 2023, at the , Robbins was awarded the Macherke Award for lifetime achievement for works that included “,” a graphic biography of Holocaust survivor and cartoonist Lily Renee, and “,” her adaptation of Yiddish short stories by her father, Muttel (Mutye) Perechudnik.

She was 85.

Hella Pick, 96, refugee and journalist who broke a glass ceiling in the British media

Hella Pick.

Journalist Hella Pick, a correspondent with The Guardian, with Reuters correspondent Mohsin Ali during a conference in Finland, 1972. (Wikipedia)

Hella Pick arrived in Britain from Austria as a child in 1939 as part of the Kindertransport; she was later reunited with her mother. After studying at the London School of Economics, she approached the Guardian newspaper and offered her services as a freelancer.

As one of the first female diplomatic correspondents in the British media, she covered some of the most dramatic developments of the postwar era, including the Cold War, the demise of the Soviet Union, the Watergate scandal, the U.S. civil rights movement and the Beatles’ arrival in America.

She also wrote two books about her native Austria: “Simon Wiesenthal: A Life in Search of Justice” (1996) and “Guilty Victim: Austria from the Holocaust to Haider” (2000). “As a refugee one never loses a certain sense of insecurity,” she told the BBC program “Desert Island Discs” in 2018. “It stays with one one’s whole life.”

Lynne Reid Banks, 94, the former kibbutznik who wrote “The Indian in the Cupboard”

Lynne Reid-Banks.

Lynne Reid-Banks, the playwright and children’s author, photographed on Jan. 3, 1956. (Daily Mirror/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)

Lynne Reid Banks, the British author best known for her children’s book “The Indian in the Cupboard” and the early feminist novel “The L-Shaped Room,” wasn’t Jewish.

But in the early 1960s she traveled to Israel on assignment, met the Jewish sculptor Chaim Stephenson, and moved with him to a kibbutz, where they lived until 1971. She recalled it as a “relatively quiet era in the Middle East,” although Reid Banks was pregnant with their third son when Stephenson was called up for service in the Six-Day War.

She later wrote “One More River,” a coming-of-age novel about a Canadian Jewish girl who moves to a kibbutz. In her 1980 book “Letters to My Israeli Sons: The Story of Jewish Survival” — a history of Zionism — she wrote that “even more important to me than you three coming to love Israel as I do, is that you shall not love it blindly, but as wisely, as bravely and as perceptively as possible.”

Ira M. Millstein, 97, corporate lawyer who boosted Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s career on the bench

Known of the elder statesman of corporate governance, Ira M. Millstein

Known of the elder statesman of corporate governance, Ira M. Millstein practiced law for more than 70 years at Weil, Gotshal & Manges. (Columbia Law)

Ira M. Millstein, a corporate lawyer and New York City civic leader who played a key role in the judicial career of his good friend Ruth Bader Ginsburg, . He was 97.

As a senior partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, he advised major corporations on board governance. In the mid-1970s, he helped devise a strategy that kept New York City out of bankruptcy.

A lifelong Democrat, he convinced Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, the ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, to support the stalled nomination of Ginsburg to the U.S. Court of Appeals in 1980. Millstein also chaired the Central Park Conservancy from 1991 to 1999.

His first job after graduating Columbia Law was in the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. “In those days,” , “my chances of becoming an antitrust lawyer in private practice were nil because there were no Jewish law firms who were practicing antitrust.” He got the last laugh, eventually serving as chairman of the antitrust sections of both the American Bar Association and the New York State Bar Association.

Nancy Neveloff Dubler, 82, New Yorker who wrote the book on medical ethics

Nancy Dubler.

Nancy Dubler was an authority on termination of care, home care and long-term care, geriatrics, adolescent medicine, prison and jail health care. (Courtesy Montefiore Einstein Center for Bioethics)

Nancy Neveloff Dubler, an expert in bioethics who literally wrote the book on some of the most wrenching health care decisions facing medical practitioners, patients and families, died on April 14. She was 82.

In “Bioethics Mediation” (2004), Dubler and her co-author, Carol Liebman, discussed how to manage conflict and respect the needs and values of those facing end-of-life decisions or a medical procedure. “It’s not about the technology,” Dubler said in 2015 at the 20th anniversary of the Montefiore-Einstein Certificate program in Bioethics and Medical Humanities, which she helped found. “It’s the interests, the rights, the problems, the perceptions, the disabilities and the desires of patients within medicine.”

Dubler founded the Bioethics Consultation Service at New York’s Montefiore Medical Center and directed it from 1978-2008. She was a consultant for bioethics at the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation and professor emerita at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Her survivors include her daughter Ariela Dubler, the head of school at the Abraham Joshua Heschel School in New York, and her son Jesse Dubler, an associate professor of religion at the University of Rochester, where he directs the Rochester Education Justice Initiative.