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Elizabeth Dwyer Hillenbrand

1928 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Elizabeth Dwyer Hillenbrand Obituary
Hillenbrand, Elizabeth Dwyer Age 89 Elizabeth Dwyer Hillenbrand, PhD, a Washington, DC-area psychologist and former journalist for the Washington Post and Syracuse Herald-Journal, died in Washington, DC on March 16, 2018. She was 89. Born Elizabeth Dwyer on December 29, 1928, she was the daughter of John Dwyer, General Manager of the Brewer-Titchener Corporation, and schoolteacher Olive Wright Dwyer. Ms. Dwyer graduated from Cortland High School in 1946 and entered Mt. Holyoke College, where she majored in psychology. While at Mt. Holyoke, she was chosen for Mademoiselle Magazine's legendary Guest Editorship, a position famed for launching careers of such writers as Joan Didion and Sylvia Plath, the latter of whom immortalized the editorship in her novel The Bell Jar. She served her editorship in New York City in the summer of 1949. Graduating from Mt. Holyoke in 1950, Ms. Dwyer worked for the advertising agency J. Walter Thompson in New York, then became a reporter for the Syracuse Herald-Journal and Sunday Herald-American. She became a leader of Syracuse's Great Books program, and it was at one of their meetings, in a discussion of Henry David Thoreau's Walden, that she met Syracuse's Deputy Director of Municipal Research, Bernard Hillenbrand. They married in July, 1955. The newlyweds moved to Bethesda, Maryland, where Ms. Hillenbrand became a reporter for the Washington Post. In the 1960s, she began pursuing a PhD in psychology from George Washington University, conducting research for her groundbreaking dissertation, a study of father absence in military families, at Bethesda's National Naval Medical Center and Virginia's Marine Corps Base Quantico. She received her PhD in 1971. She worked at several DC-area psychology practices, then opened a private practice working with children and adults. In the 1990s, she served as Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at her alma mater, George Washington University. Divorced in the late 1970s, Ms. Hillenbrand married Michael Fishman, MD, a DC-area psychiatrist, in 2006. Ms. Hillenbrand is survived by her husband, Michael; her brother, Peter Dwyer; her four children, Lisa Hillenbrand, John Hillenbrand, Susan Hillenbrand Avallon, and Laura Hillenbrand; her stepchildren, Benjamin Fishman and Sarah Fishman; and six grandchildren. After a memorial service at Washington, DC's Holy Trinity Church, her ashes will be interred alongside those of her parents in Cortland, New York. Please sign the Guestbook at www.legacy.com/washingtontimes
Published in Washington Times on Mar. 23, 2018
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