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Edwin and Enez Hart

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Edwin and Enez Hart Obituary
Edwin "Bud" Hart and Enez Blumm Hart passed away this week in their home in St. Petersburg, Fla.Bud was 98; Enez was 97. Below is a brief joint biography. They were virtually inseparable throughout their 76 years of marriage. Bud Hart was born April 7, 1920, in New Kensington. He was the son of Meyer and Ida Marcus Hart, both turn-of-the-century immigrants from Eastern Europe. Bud attended public schools in New Kensington, eventually graduating from New Kensington High School as class valedictorian. He attended college at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, where he received a bachelor's degree in business administration from the university's Wharton School of Business. Enez was born July 14, 1921, in New York City. Her father was Stanley Walter Blumm; her mother was Inez Levy Blumm. Her parents originally lived in Vicksburg, Miss., but took up residence in New York in 1920. They divorced in 1936. Enez's mother married Harry Dulfon July 15, 1937, in New York. Enez attended public schools in New York, including PS 6 on the Upper East Side. She attended preparatory school at Sullins College in Bristol, Va. Afterwards, she enrolled in Syracuse University, graduating in 1942. While at Syracuse, Enez met Bud. Bud and Enez married Dec. 13, 1942, at her mother's apartment in New York. Soon afterward, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps (later renamed the Air Force). Bud was based initially at the Boca Raton Air Base in Florida and later served in France. He trained as a navigator and learned how to use and service the latest radar technology. Following his discharge from service, Bud returned, with Enez to New Kensington, where he became manager of Hart's Department Store, the business founded by his parents. As manager and, after the death of his parents, owner of Hart's Department Store, Bud presided over the expansion of the business by regularly adding new departments and branch stores. He introduced numerous business innovations, including a pneumatic communications system for approving charge account purchases. Bud and Enez, who later became active in the business, made frequent buying trips to New York City to ensure that the latest fashions were always in stock. By the time of their retirement in 1980, and sale of the business, Hart's had added eight satellite stores throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania. Their first son, Thomas, was born Sept. 2, 1945, in New Kensington. Their second son, Jeffrey, was born there Dec. 29, 1947. Bud was recalled to duty in the Air Force soon after the beginning of the Korean War in 1950. He was stationed at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Miss., where he earned the rank of captain. At Keesler, he served as an instructor in radar and electronics. The family lived in nearby Gulfport until the end of the war in 1953; thereafter, they returned to New Kensington. As the war ended, Bud and Enez returned to New Kensington. Soon thereafter, Enez began working at Hart's. Her role was as manager of, and principal buyer for, the women's sportswear department. In the 1960s, she started a bridal department that provided wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses for thousands of Allegheny Valley residents. One of her favorite roles at Hart's was that of hostess of monthly store employee dinners. Held on the second floor of the New Kensington store, these dinners were catered entirely by Enez, virtually without assistance. Both Bud and Enez were active in the civic affairs of the New Kensington community. Bud served on the Board of Directors of Citizens General Hospital, as well as the New Kensington Redevelopment Authority. He was an active member of Beth Jacob Synagogue. And, the couple were generous donors to local charities. Bud was an avid amateur radio enthusiast. His earned his first radio license as a teenager. Bud personally built much of the electronic gear he used. He was a passionate golfer. Many weekends would find him playing at Hillcrest Country Club, where he was a member. Bud and Enez loved to travel. They traveled throughout Europe, South America and Asia, often with friends. Following the sale of Hart's Department Store, Bud and Enez moved to St. Petersburg, Fla., where they built a home and acquired two papillon dogs, on whom they doted, and they became active members of that community. They became members of Beth El congregation. As he had in New Kensington, Bud immersed himself in his new home's civic and charitable affairs. He participated as a volunteer in an AARP program providing free income tax preparation services for senior citizens. He also volunteered with a Small Business Administration program that offered to young entrepreneurs the help and advice of retired successful businessmen. Bud became a docent at the St. Petersburg Museum of Fine Arts where he frequently conducted tours and lectures. And, in partnership with Enez, he was a highly successful fundraiser for St. Petersburg's The American Stage. Enez and Bud had a wide circle of friends in both New Kensington and St. Petersburg. She especially enjoyed entertaining. Soon after moving to Florida, Enez resumed an earlier passion: painting. She took classes and became an accomplished amateur painter. Enez further pursued her lifelong interest in art by also becoming a member of, and docent at, the St. Petersburg Museum of Fine Arts. A second, and perhaps greater, passion of Enez's was live theater. She and Bud became members of The American Stage, a professional theater company in St. Petersburg. Enez quickly became a volunteer with the theater and a major fundraiser for it. She raised money for the theater by arranging, promoting, and leading theater trips to cities across the United States as well as Canada and England. Over a period of approximately 20 years, her activities raised more than $1 million for The American Stage. In tribute to Enez and Bud, The American Stage named their new performance space the Bud and Enez Hart Stage. Enez was a puzzle enthusiast. Not a day went by when she didn't work on, and usually complete, the New York Times crossword puzzle. To Bud's chagrin, she generally completed the puzzle in pen. Later in life, she took up other forms of written puzzles. Enez was an avid reader and belonged to a series of book clubs. She always seemed to have a book in hand or within easy reach. Enez and Bud loved to travel. Their travels took them to every country in Europe and South America, as well as Japan, Hong Kong and Malaysia. Enez even organized trips to France and other European countries for the students in her painting classes. Bud and Enez are survived by their sons, Tom and Jeff and their wives, Joan Goldhammer Hart and Donna Layton Hart; their grandchildren, Joshua, Julia and Zachary Hart; and great-grandson, Samuel Hart.
Published in The Valley News Dispatch on Feb. 10, 2019
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