On Wednesday, December 23rd 2020, Audrey Irene Steinhorn passed away at the age of 82. She died peacefully in the company of her beloved lifetime partner Helen B. McDonald. She is survived by her son Bartholomew Alan Steinhorn and his wife Kimberly, as well as her two grandchildren, Jacob McDonald Steinhorn and Tyler Jack Steinhorn.
Audrey Irene Steinhorn was born on April 1, 1938 in Orange, NJ. She grew up in Upper Saddle River, the only adopted child of Frank and Marie Montesi. Strong and athletic, Audrey was a fierce runner and all-around star athlete. She attended Cedar Crest College in Pennsylvania where she received her BA in 1960 and earned her Masters of Social Work in 1962 from Boston University.
In 1962 Audrey began her career at Children’s Village in Dobbs Ferry, NY as a youth group social worker. From 1963 to 1967 she worked as a psychiatric social worker at the Linden Hill School in Hawthorne, NY. In 1967 Audrey became the case work supervisor at Hawthorne Cedar Knolls School while also working as an assistant instructor at Albert Einstein Hospital in the Bronx. From 1977 to 1980 Audrey was the supervisor of case work at The Phoenix School which was part of the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services. Audrey met her life partner Helen in 1980 in New York City, where they were both clinical social workers and practicing psychotherapists. Together they co-wrote the book “Homosexuality, A Practical Guide to Counseling Lesbians, Gay Men, and Their Families” and gave numerous presentations and led national, regional and local workshops in support of the gay and lesbian community. Audrey wrote many articles which were published in professional books and journals as well as a weekly column, “Psychological Sounds,” in the Kingston Daily Freeman. Audrey was also at the forefront of women’s rights working with the National Organization for Women to promote equality for all women.
A loyal partner, dedicated mother, and super-fun grandmother, Audrey was never short of love to give, whether to her family, to others, or to the many animals that populated her life. She loved participating in agility events with her dogs over the years and after the attacks in New York on September 11th, 2001, Audrey and her beloved Golden Retriever Sota, a trained service dog, visited patients in area hospitals and counseled children who lost their parents.
Audrey had a passionate awe for nature and was an astute photographer with a special eye for finding its whimsical beauty. Over the years, many of her pictures were displayed at libraries, fairs, and art shows throughout the Hudson Valley. In her later years, as dementia, then Alzheimer’s set in, Audrey found joy in the simplicity of visiting with friends and family. She will be remembered for her wonderful and often sharp sense of humor and for her strong will and determination that helped her achieve so much in her life and touch so many in the process.