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Rachel Theresa Nader Dwaihy


1917 - 2019
Rachel Theresa Nader Dwaihy Obituary
Rachel Theresa Nader Dwaihy

Rachel Theresa Nader Dwaihy passed away on November 6, 2019, two weeks shy of her 102nd birthday.

Mother of 10 and grandmother/great-grandmother to nearly 60, Rachel was the matriarch of the Dwaihy clan and beloved heart of the family.

She is survived by her children Paula (James) Edgar, Anne Marie (Thomas) Abowd, Margaret Pryor, John (Karen), Norman (Madeleine), Rachelle (Steven Morris), Marian (Thomas Briske), Jane (Ron) Omilian, and George (Carolin).

She was preceded in death by her husband Dr. Paul Joseph Dwaihy, daughter and son-in-law Elizabeth and David Barr, sister Marie Shaieb, and brothers Joseph, Anthony and Edward, and granddaughter Veronica Dwaihy.

Born in LaGrange, Georgia, on November 19, 1917, to Lebanese immigrants George Nader and Anne Karam Nader, Rachel was the eldest of five children. Early on, she studied classical piano under the tutelage of the Ursuline sisters. She learned Arabic and mastered the ways of Lebanese hospitality from her parents.

In 1940, Rachel married Paul Dwaihy, a respected physician, and himself the child of Lebanese immigrants. They raised a family of ten children on Detroit's east side, and sustained a devoted partnership until his death in 1985.

Rachel embodied the Arab ethic of beiti beitkum-my house is your house-and to sit at her table was to feel at home. She made food for all, sharing a hot bowl of green beans and rice with her secret spice.

A glimmer in Rachel's eyes signaled the beginning of a story with vivid images of the family's origins, her voice channeling the melody of love songs that her parents sang to each other.

Rachel lined the walls of her home with the graduation photos of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and delighted in taking visitors for a walk along this "wall of fame," proudly proclaiming the achievements and character of each graduate.

A lifelong avid reader, Rachel zoomed through books, and drew on the work of authors, filmmakers, poets, and saints, sharing her gathered wisdom freely. In quiet moments together, she'd recite a passage. This one from Shakespeare's Hamlet was a favorite:

"This above all: to thine own self be true. And it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man."

Rachel's family and community carry her spirit forward with gratitude, in awe of her beautiful life.

Memorial services will be held on November 9, at Saint Maron Church in Detroit. Viewing at 10 a.m. and mass at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, Rachel's family requests that donations be made to Saint Maron Church or Saint Jude Hospital.




Published in Detroit Free Press & The Detroit News from Nov. 7 to Nov. 8, 2019
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