Newington - Winifred A. "Winnie" Tanger, 92, died Wednesday, April 9, 2014, at Newington Health Care Center in Newington.
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Born Feb. 10, 1922, daughter of the late John L. and Madeline W. (Lowery) Mangan in Irvington, N.J., she grew up in East Orange, NJ. Winnie's first husband, William Tanger, whom she married in 1942, predeceased her in 2002. She married her second husband, Frank Berkowitz in 1976 and he predeceased her in 2001.
She was predeceased by her son, John Tanger in 1979; and also by her brother, Edwin Mangan in 2000.
Winnie is survived by her children, William Tanger of Roanoke, Va., Kathryn Chasteen of Bellingham, Wash., Gerald Tanger of Waterford, Virginia Moignard of Yardley, Pa., Patricia Tanger of Newington; and her stepchildren, Irene Driscoll of Riverside and Jean Viallet of Santa Fe, N.M. Ten grandchildren, four great-grandchildren; and a nephew and a niece also survive her.
Winnie moved to Waterford in 1952 and became involved in politics, serving on the Democratic Town Committee, the school board, the Representative Town Committee and eventually as a member of the House of Representatives in 1975. An activist all of her adult life, she supported unions, gay rights, the state income tax, abolishing the death penalty, banning smoking in public places, State of CT ID cards for non-drivers, arts funding, civil rights and abolishing mandatory school prayer. She was also involved in local issues including improving the schools, lowering property taxes, traffic safety and replacing the Niantic River Draw Bridge with a lower draw bridge. During her working career, she worked for an insurance company, a union local, as a real estate agent and as a police commissioner.
There will be a memorial service at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 31, at the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church, 60 Huntington St., New London.
Her remains have been donated to the University of Connecticut Medical Center and will later be cremated. Burial will be private.
Donations may be made in her name to The Southern Poverty Law Center, 400 Washington Ave., Montgomery, AL 36104.
The D'Esopo Funeral Chapel of Wethersfield is assisting the family with arrangements.
For online expressions of sympathy, please visit www.desopo.com.
D'Esopo Funeral Chapel
277 Folly Brook Boulevard Wethersfield, CT 06109
Published in The Day on May 11, 2014