Maurice I. Levin

Maurice I. Levin died on December 13, 2023, in Port Amherst, Massachusetts.
Assistant Professor of Russian, 1963-65

(The following was provided by Daily Hampshire Gazette in December 29, 2023:)

Maurice I. Levin

Amherst, MA – Maurice I. Levin, 92, passed away on December 13, 2023, at the age of 92, in Amherst, Massachusetts, following a brief illness. He was the son of the late David and Rose Levin of Newburyport, Massachusetts. He was predeceased by his brother Leonard Levin; his sisters Elaine Mussman and Norma Kabachnick; his sister-in-law, Nancy Vegelante; and his niece, Suzan Proia. He is survived by his wife of nearly seventy years, Donna J. Levin; his children and their spouses, Diane Levin and Stephen Hicks, and John Levin and Sarah Osgood; his grandson, Adamo Lanza; his step-granddaughter, Emmalyn Hicks and her partner Rachel Stein; and beloved nephews and nieces.

Maurice was a professor emeritus of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he taught in the Department of Slavic Language and Literature, from 1968 until his retirement in 1998, serving as department chair in the mid-1970’s. In 1977 he received the Distinguished Teaching Award, which honors exemplary teaching. Prior to that he taught Russian language at Indiana University as an associate professor (1965-1968) and as an assistant professor at Bowdoin College (1963-1965). He authored a highly regarded and widely used college- and graduate-level textbook, Russian Declension and Conjugation: A Structural Description with Exercises (Slavica Publishers, 1978).

Maurice graduated from Revere High School in Revere, Massachusetts, in 1949. In 1953 he earned his B.A. in English from Boston University, enlisted in the United States Army, and married Donna. He served his country in the Korean War from 1953 to 1956. During that time, he studied Russian language at the Monterey Army Language School in Monterey, California, and was subsequently stationed in Frankfurt and Berlin, Germany. Following his honorable discharge, he continued his education, earning his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1958 under the G.I. Bill.

While higher education was his calling, his true devotion was to his family. He and Donna raised their two children in Amherst. As a family they enjoyed sailing and kayaking on Western Massachusetts waterways and sharing cookouts and holiday celebrations with family and friends. Anyone-particularly students far from home with no place to go on the holidays–was always welcome at the Levin family dinner table. A lover of verse and music, Maurice recited or sang from memory poetry, Shakespearean sonnets, Irish ballads, and Tom Lehrer tunes. Their home was a frequent gathering place for the numerous friends Maurice and Donna made-many of whom remained friends lifelong. Beloved by family, dear friends, university colleagues, and students, he will be dearly missed.

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