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Obituary of William Rabinowitz, 93


William "Bill" Rabinowitz, 93, of State College, died Saturday, February 16, 2019, at Foxdale Village.

Born June 24, 1925, in New York City, he was the son of the late Joseph and Sophie Spitzer Rabinowitz. On June 25, 1950 he married Martha Ferber, his loving wife of almost sixty years, who preceded him in death on January 15, 2010.

He is survived by two sons, David Rabinowitz and his wife, Patricia, of North Attleboro, MA, Joseph Rabinowitz and his wife, Marilyn, of Brooklyn, NY; four grandchildren, Jaime, Rachel, Michael and Claire Rabinowitz; three great-grandchildren, Dylan Nelson, Travis Ruel and Cameron Ruel. In addition to his parents and wife, he was preceded in death by his brothers, Dudley and Norman Rabinowitz.

In 1943, at the age of eighteen, he joined the U.S. Navy as an Apprentice Seaman. Eighteen months later, after graduating from Midshipman School at Cornell University, he was commissioned as an officer, Ensign, during World War II. He served as the anti-submarine Warfare Officer aboard the destroyer USS Hopewell and saw service in the Pacific Theatre of Operations as part of the Third Fleet under the command of Admiral William Halsey. The Hopewell was part of the overwhelming display of US Naval power that accompanied General Douglas MacArthur when the Japanese formerly surrendered on September 4, 1945.

William was a 1944 graduate of the V-12 Navy College Training Program at the University of Rochester. He received a Bachelor's degree from The City College, New York, NY in 1947; a Master's degree in 1949 and a Doctorate degree in Educational Psychology in 1955, both from the Teachers College, Columbia University.

In 1964, William came to Penn State University as a Professor of Educational Psychology and Head of the newly opened Department of Educational Psychology in the College of Education. He retired as Professor Emeritus in 1987. Early in his career, during the 1962-1963 academic year, he was a Fulbright Research Scholar at the University of Oslo in Norway. Later in his career he was again a Fulbright Research Scholar at the Minority of Education in Lisbon, Portage. During the 1970 to 1971 academic year, he was a visiting Professor of Physiology and Education at Bar-Ilan University in Israel. After retiring from Penn State University he was a visiting Professor at the University of South Florida.

William was a Fellow, Division 15 member of the American Psychological Association. He served as Co-Chairman of the Program Committee for the American Educational Research Association, Division C, 1973 meeting. He was a member of Sigma Xi, Vice President of the Penn State Chapter of the American Association of University Professors from 1971 until 1976, also a member of the National Society for the Study of Education and was a member of the National Executive Committee of American Professors for Peace in the Middle East.

Bill was well known for his positive attitude and warm nature. He loved to travel, tell jokes, perform magic tricks, and sing old songs. His upbeat presence will be missed by all who knew him.

Funeral service will be at 10 a.m., on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 at Koch Funeral Home, 2401 S. Atherton Street, State College, with Rabbi David Ostrich officiating.

Burial will be in Centre County Memorial Park.

Memorial contributions may be made to Congregation Brit Shalom, 620 E Hamilton Ave, State College, PA 16801or to the Southern Poverty Law Center by visiting

Arrangements are under the care of Koch Funeral Home, State College. Online condolences and signing of the guest book may be entered at or visit us on Facebook.

Name of Deceased

William Rabinowitz



Date of Death


Date of Birth


Funeral Home

Koch Funeral Home

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