Dr. Boaz Kahana, 86, passed away Friday afternoon, on Nov 6, 2020. Boaz was born in New York City on May 18, 1934, to Joseph and Batya Kahana, who had recently immigrated from Palestine.
Boaz’s first language was Hebrew, and he attended the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Boaz graduated from Yeshiva University in 1955 and after pursuing training in clinical psychology in New York, he received a Ph.D. in human development from the University of Chicago in 1966. Dr. Kahana taught at Washington University in St. Louis, and Oakland University in Michigan, before joining Cleveland State University in 1984. He served as department chair for several years and engaged in full time teaching and research until he retired in 2019. Boaz was committed to the success of his students and his colleagues. A recipient of numerous awards for his teaching and research, Boaz authored over 200 publications spanning the fields of developmental psychology, gerontology, and traumatic stress.
Boaz was a beloved teacher. He was admired by all who knew him for his kindness and generosity of spirit. He was a lifelong learner and voraciously read about diverse disciplines until his last days. Boaz was an optimist and saw in each of his students the potential to better the world. In addition to his academic scholarship, Boaz was also a gifted clinical
psychologist who studied and combined insights from
behavioral, cognitive and psychodynamic approaches. A lifelong student of classical Jewish texts, Boaz saw the wisdom of the Rabbis in the analysis and treatment of psychological distress, whether caused by ordinary events or extreme
trauma. Boaz was a regular at synagogue services and was a good friend to many fellow congregants.
Boaz married Eva Frost, who was a Holocaust survivor and immigrant from Hungary. Together they raised two sons:
Jeffrey, born 1967, and Michael, born 1969. Boaz
collaborated with his wife, Eva, on many scientific projects. His sons followed in his footsteps, becoming professors. Boaz loved traveling and learning foreign languages, and made friends wherever he went.
Boaz’s legacy survives through his wife of 58 years Eva; his sons Jeffrey (Marlene) of Cleveland, and Michael (Jessica) of Philadelphia; and grandchildren, Nathan, Ezekiel, Joseph, Raphael, Benjamin, Samuel, and Leah. His siblings, Sarah Hertzberg of Teaneck, New Jersey and Dr. Baruch Kahana of Miami Beach, Florida, and his many nieces and nephews, and their families, whom he cared deeply about.
Donations in memory of Boaz can be made to the Friendship Circle of Cleveland that provides assistance to children with disabilities.
The funeral service, which was held at Zion Memorial Park, can be viewed on YouTube by searching “Boaz Kahana funeral service.”