Joline "Jolly" Odentz passed away peacefully on Thursday, January 14th at Glenmeadow in Longmeadow, Massachusetts. Born in Springfield, Massachusetts on July 11, 1929, Jolly was the only child of Solomon Greenberg and Frances (Weinberg) Greenberg. She graduated at the top of her class from Classical High School in 1946, winning the Latin and French awards. She went on to Radcliffe College where she was one of the first women to write for the Harvard Crimson, a Harvard/Radcliffe publication. She graduated there in 1950. After receiving her bachelor's degree, Jolly returned to Springfield and married optometrist Dr. Gerald "Jerry" Esi Odentz. She worked for several years at Monsanto prior to settling in Longmeadow, MA where they raised their three children. A life-long member of Temple Beth El, Jolly was very active in the sisterhood organization there. She co-ran the Temple Beth El gift shop for over a decade, as well as published the temple calendar. She also volunteered for several other organizations. Jolly and her husband loved square dancing and enjoyed wonderful times with their many life-long friends. They traveled extensively, first driving across the United States then venturing around the world. Eventually, they purchased a second home in Florida where they spent several years during the winter months. Jolly was known for her extensive holiday gatherings and parties where she often cooked full-course meals for over sixty people. She was an avid lover of books, games and puzzles, and was a nationally ranked Scrabble champion. Jolly is pre-deceased by her husband Gerald. She is survived by their three children and their spouses, Lauren (Nathan Levin) of Needham, Massachusetts, Sheryl Odentz Maller (Brant Maller) of Larchmont, New York, and Howard Odentz (David Gilfor) of Somers, Connecticut. She is also survived by her three grandchildren, Zachary Maller, Gregory Maller and Briana Levin, as well as many nephews and nieces. Also, for the past seven years, her devoted caregiver Eulah Turner was a joy and an inspiration. Eulah, along with Nadine Guthrie, Beth Wilson, Claudia Wright, and Moni Adegboyegun offered companionship, comfort and contentment to Joline in her final years. Throughout her entire life, she consistently said that being married to Jerry was the best thing that ever happened to her. She loved and was extremely proud of her children and grandchildren. A graveside funeral for the immediate family, broadcast on ZOOM, will be held at 12:30pm on Sunday, January 17th with a service / shiva to continue on ZOOM on Monday, January 18th at 4pm. Donations can be made to Glenmeadow Senior Living in Longmeadow, MA. The Ascher-Zimmerman Funeral Home is assisting the family.
Published in The Republican from Jan. 15 to Jan. 16, 2021.