Toby Mayson Ornstein passed away on Feb. 5, in her daughter’s home. She was surrounded by the love she had always given.
Growing up in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, she left New York for a singing engagement in Atlanta and knew that that was where she wanted to live. She met charming Max Mayson there, and they were married in 1945, when she was just 19.
Their daughter, Phyllis, was born the following year, and Toby became a marvelous and creative homemaker. Her meals were fresh and delicious, and she always made Shabbat and holidays special for the family. With a thirst for learning and growing, she decided to go back to school. In 1958, she graduated with a degree in interior design and began working with her own clients.
Toby adored her family, and her grandchildren gave her immense joy. Her love was unconditional, generous and always supportive. That caring spirit carried over to extended family, each of her friends and anyone she encountered. When Toby had a conversation with you, she was all in — genuinely interested and listening. If you needed her help, it was immediate.
Toby’s loving nature guided her to remarry when Max passed away after 41 loving years together. She soon met Terry Ornstein and they were married for 25 good years until he passed.
Toby was known for her healthy lifestyle — fresh fruits and vegetables, which she loved to share, a nice daily walk, staying active and playing bridge with friends, doing what made her happy and always fresh air from open windows no matter what the weather. She was truly a role model and beautiful inside and out. She will be greatly missed and remembered always.
Toby was predeceased by her first husband, Max Mayson; second husband, Terry Ornstein; sister and brother-in-law, Frieda and Ed Reichler; brother, Murray Hoch; son-in-law, Joe Cohen; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Esther & Sam Karp and Sara & Bill Mayson. Toby is survived by her devoted daughter, Phyllis M. Cohen; adoring grandchildren, Steven & Delilah Cohen, Jodi & Shon Mekyten; six precious great-grandchildren: Sarah, Jamie, Mia & Shira Cohen and Maya & Joey Mekyten; and sister Millie (Irwin) Amdur; as well as many loving nieces, nephews, cousins and their families.
If you wish to make a donation in her memory, please consider Weinstein Hospice & Jewish Home Life, Hadassah, ORT or Congregation Or Ve Shalom. A graveside service was held Monday, Feb. 7 at Arlington Memorial Park. Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, 770-451-4999.