Barbara Muriel Greenberg passed away peacefully on May 13, 2016 in Chicago. She was 88.
Born in the Bronx on May 6, 1928, Greenberg graduated from New York University in 1949 and received her Masters in Social Work from University of Kansas in 1952. She married her husband Bernie on September 1, 1949, in New York.
The family moved to Chicago in 1954, where they had three more children and settled roots firmly in Hyde Park. She spent the early part of her social work career at Michael Reese Hospital, where she worked for 27 years, and established her private practice in 1992.
Committed to understanding the family system for each patient, Greenberg practiced psychotherapy for over 60 years and developed a formidable reputation for successfully treating thousands of patients, many of whom owed their new found love and happiness to her insightful guidance. Passionate in helping people, she maintained an active therapy practice right until the last day of her life. Her patients loved her and often called her their “second mother”.
An active member of the community, she always “gave back.” Greenberg was active in the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club, PTAs, the Hyde Park Co-op and many other volunteer organizations. In addition she was an avid activist, always one of the first to work on behalf of civil rights and politicians who held those values.
Greenberg, known as “Barbie” to her friends, traveled extensively with her family, living in Rome for two years, and traveling throughout Europe, Mexico, Brazil and other parts of the globe. Her travels continued as she visited her children in London, Guatemala, Hong Kong, and across the United States. A passion she shared with her husband was to collect art, particularly antiquities. Over the years they transformed their home into a veritable museum of beautiful pieces collected from their travels.
Greenberg was a big supporter of the arts, attending the Chicago Symphony, the Lyric Opera and various repertory theaters for decades, having performed in shows at various times throughout her life. She loved to sing, dance and play the piano, and imparted that love to her children and grandchildren. Greenberg exuded an incomparable warmth and love, and was always surrounded by great friends, supporting them with compassion and humor.
She is survived by her loving husband Bernie, her four children Gary, Linda, Debbie and Daniel, her eleven grandchildren, Ben, Rachel, Josh, Jason, Emily, Matthew, Kate, Sarah, Zachary, Andrew and Sasha, her newborn great grandson, Jasper, her sister, Felice and her niece and nephew, Jody and Ricky.