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Suzanne Wymelenberg

September 29, 1929 ~ November 25, 2019 (age 90)


Suzanne Wymelenberg of Cambridge, Massachusetts died in her sleep on the 25th of November at the Eliot Health and Rehabilitation Center in Natick after a long illness. 

She is survived by many nieces and nephews with whom she shared a special relationship and her siblings, Nancy Godbold, and William and Robert Wymelenberg, and her sister in law, Sandy Wymelenberg. She adored Cato, one in a long line of devoted canines.  She is also survived by her husband and companion of 47years, K.R. Kaffenberger.

Ms Wymelenberg was educated at Pius X high school, Milwaukee State Teachers College and Marquette University.  She graduated from Marquette with a Bachelors degree in Journalism.

Upon graduation she immediately drove to California with her aunt and got a job as a teller for the Bank of America in San Francisco.  She subsequently returned to Wisconsin and worked at Prange’s Department Store in Sheboygan for several years.  There she laid out, wrote, and placed the store’s advertising in local newspapers. 

Unhappy in Sheboygan she moved to Boston to be near her sister Carol.  Within a few days she was employed by the public relations office of Arthur D. Little and Company, the international science consulting firm.  She enjoyed this job and continued to be in touch with close friends from those days.

When Suzanne left ADL she began freelancing as a writer and journalist.  Much of her work came through Time-Life.  She worked on various book series for the books division.  She developed material for and accompanied many of the famed photographers of Life magazine on their shoots.  She matured as a medical journalist and became a frequent contributor to Time, the Weekly News Magazine, during its heyday.  For decades her ADL and family stories displayed her reconteur’s wit.

Ms Wymelenberg’s publications include; Second Hand is Better, Research at the New England Medical Center, Science and Babies (with Beverly Winikoff) for which Suzanne won a New England Medical Writers Award, The Contraceptive Handbook (also with Winikoff) and The Whole Truth About Contraception.

Suzanne was an avid gardener and for twenty years led the Charles River Community Garden.  She guided this cooperative garden from a scrubby collection of a few plots to a fenced, ordered, and organized collaboration of more than 100 gardeners cultivating more than 70 fenced, handsome plots. 

In 1972 she purchased her house on Rockingham Street.  Women did not buy houses alone in those days so she and three other women buyers in the neighborhood were the subject of a Sunday magazine piece.  She reported that, “Girls rent, women buy”.  The house remained her pride and joy for the rest of her life.

Memorial donations may be made to Planned Parenthood, the Humane Society of the United States, UNICEF or a charity of your choice.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Suzanne Wymelenberg, please visit our floral store.


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