Everett M. Bernstein, age 94, passed away Thursday June 7, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. He is survived by his wife Joan (nee Keith) Bernstein, and her three children: Malcolm Nichols, Bellingham, WA, Douglas Nichols, Lenoir, NC, and Lucinda Nichols, San Luis Obispo, CA; his sister Marsha Anderson, West Bridgewater, MA; and cousins: Jane Norling, Berkeley, CA, Peter Norling, Vienna, VA, and Lisa Norling, Minneapolis, MN. His oldest step-daughter Olivia Nichols passed away in 2014.
Bernstein was born in New York City on March 5, 1924 to Isidor and Rose (nee Yeretsky) Bernstein. He attended public schools in Chicago (Kozminski), Cincinnati, and New York City. He was an Eagle Scout, and participated in long distance bicycle touring in New England and the Midwest with the American Youth Hostels. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology until drafted into the US Army in 1942. Assigned to the Signal Corps, Bernstein was stationed in New Guinea setting up communication lines when he contracted what was initially diagnosed as Diphtheria, and sent to the Ocean Sanitarium in Atlantic City, NJ. It was not till several months later that the more accurate diagnosis of mild Poliomyelitis was determined, and Bernstein returned to New York City to follow a recovery regimen that included swimming and hot compresses advocated by the Sister Kenny Institute of Minneapolis. He subsequently completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn, and a Master of Arts in Education at Columbia University. He taught high school science and math in Aberdeen, Maryland for three years, then started an ink manufacturing business, Flexo-Gravure, with his father and associate Edward Chung in Brooklyn during the 1950’s that included Hersey Chocolate Company among its clientele. After moving to Chicago in 1959, Bernstein worked for the Graphic Arts Technical Institute at 18th and Prairie, I.S Berlin printing company, then became the chief chemist for W.F. Hall printing company until his retirement in 1986.
Bernstein married Joan Nichols in 1963. She was amazed that he chose to marry a woman with four children, yet he was always a patient and supportive father and a devoted husband. A lifelong progressive democrat, Bernstein maintained a keen interest in politics, and would debate the merits of zero population growth and the superiority of hydrogen fueled automobiles. He was an accomplished photographer, poet, and outdoorsman. Both he and Joan kayaked many of the major rivers of the Midwest in their Klepper kayak. He was a long-term member of the First Unitarian Church of Chicago. A memorial service will be held at Montgomery Place, 5550 S. Shore Drive, Chicago, Ill. on July 2 at 2 p.m.