Marjorie B. Cohen, or as she preferred, Marjorie Anne Kipp Brown Cohen, a force of nature, and a true national treasure, passed away Jan. 15, 2021. She was 79 years old, but still 21 at heart.
A devoted and loving wife to Jerome J. (Jerry) Cohen; beloved and admired mother of Brian (Emet), H. Jason (Katt), Kathleen and Aaron (Brianne); cherished and adored “Nana” to Sam, Jack, Charlie, Lily, Grace and Neli.
She was born Marjorie Anne Brown, October 4, 1941 in Trenton, New Jersey. The second child to Milton Jackson and Frances Kipperman Brown. One of four, Marjorie was extremely close with her siblings Lois Goodman, Joan Goldberg and Ken Brown. They always referred to each other as the “four musketeers.” Marjorie’s siblings were her best friends.
At age 12, Marjorie along with the rest of the Brown family moved from Trenton to Coronado. A big departure from the east coast, it was here her love for the Hotel Del Coronado and the grand scale of porches intertwined. She pursued a passionate interest in dance, cheerleading, theater, debate, and journalism. She also worked in the family clothing store MJ Brown’s, which still remains a staple of Coronado at the corner of Tenth and Orange Avenue.
Soon after starting high school, Marjorie would be introduced to the love of her life, a man that would take her breath away, Jerome J. Cohen, a fun-loving, creative rebel from Beverly Hills. After being crowned homecoming queen and graduating from Coronado High School, class of 1959, Marjorie attended University of San Diego, formerly, San Diego College for Women.
Marjorie and Jerry were married June 12, 1960 and of course held their wedding reception in the Crown room at the Hotel Del. That following decade they welcomed in three of their children, Brian (1962), Jason (1966) and Kathleen (1968). While establishing the Cohen roots on Charing Cross Road in Los Angeles for over 44 years, Marjorie also started her charity work with Children’s Psychiatric Guild, helped expand the family real estate business, Brown & Company, with her brother Ken, and continued to add her value to the non-profit world by raising money and holding an executive role with Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles.
In 1983, Marjorie and Jerry welcomed her self proclaimed, “change of life baby” Aaron into the world. Soon after she would find her most passionate work in Cancer research. In 1987, Marjorie B. Cohen was one of the creators of the Los Angeles Chapter of ICRF (Israel Cancer Research Fund) and its inaugural Gala. By the mid 90s she became the Executive Director of ICRF, Los Angeles. With grace, poise and a never take “no” attitude, over the next 15 years Marjorie raised millions of dollars for cancer research, created the next generation of fundraisers with ICRF - Visions, advocated for women making a difference in the world by creating the “Women of Action” gala, and welcomed five grandchildren to the Cohen family, all while solidifying her mark on so many people’s lives.
Over her lifetime, Marjorie B. Cohen was not just a mother to her children, but countless people who felt she had a hand in raising them. She was the pillar of strength for others in their moments of weakness, she was a gracious host, “Margie’s Mission,” to anyone who wanted or needed a hot meal and a welcoming embrace — even the occasional forlorn traveler whom she barely knew. Marjorie was a fabulous dancer, a legendary entertainer at her home, a friend to everyone she crossed paths with and had a smile that could take your pain away. She stood for family and cherished her relationships. She loved the Presidents, American democracy, the soulful sounds of music, how food could bring people together, and connecting to Judaism on the deepest of levels.
Even at the tail end of her rich life-story, her weekly Shabbat phone calls became the essence of her uplifting spirit. There are many saved voicemails out there today as her living testament.
Her gratitude for life was measured by her loving relationships. She will be greatly missed by everyone who knew her.
The Family Requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in the name of Marjorie B. Cohen to: Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRFonline.org) or The Jewish National Fund (JNF.org).