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In Memoriam: Ariel Bourke (June 18, 1999 to April 14, 2020 )

Ariel has always been an "old soul," wise beyond her years. Not surprisingly, she grew into a thoughtful and smart young woman full of beauty and strength. When Ari chose a path, there was no dissuading her. She decided to end her precious life on April 14. She studied and lived lighting design, an art form that proved as ephemeral as she was. Ari persevered through life's challenges with determination and grace. Notably, her high school trajectory was transformed in the summer of junior year by a life-threatening autoimmune illness that resulted in weeks of hospitalization followed by limited energy and school attendance upon her return to Northampton High School that fall. Not satisfied lounging around aimlessly, she quickly filled the new empty spaces by teaching herself theatrical lighting design which served as a life preserver and ultimately led to her college work and life's passion. At Purchase College, Ari threw herself into her studies and theater production. She loved working long hours with fellow Design/Tech students, having found an outlet for her creativity and expression. Her friends and professors became her second family, evidenced by a shivah gathering illuminating (even by remote) how deeply she loved and was loved. Ari often spoke of college as a place where she felt at ease and accepted for who she was. Although it took her time to recognize and articulate, she was a queer transgender woman. Ari was described by her many close friends as an open and genuine person, and she made them feel supported to be their best and authentic selves. Ari could often be found taking long nighttime walks with friends, gazing at the stars, and pondering deep existential questions. In addition to lighting design, she loved drawing and tattooing, drinking exotic teas, and enjoying and sharing life with those close to her. Cape Cod and P-town often called to her, and she was always down for a Phish show, or two, or three. With Ari's death, she leaves her sister and loyal advocate, Ilana, her loving parents Miriam and Andrew, her loving grandparents Marlene Bourke and Judy and Fred Krell, her dear uncles and aunts Jaron Bourke, Josh Krell, Krisna Basu, Jon Krell, and Marina Mazor, her cousins Leo, Bella and Susannah, and ("cape kids") Sarah, Joe, Abe, Lily, and Logan, her chosen uncles Steve Garber and Bill Bonnet, and her many many cherished friends and loved ones.

Ariel Bourke.jfif

We thank the following individuals for their generous contributions in memory of Ariel:

Jean Snyder
The Gruszecki Family
Molly Watkins and Dave Dersham
Nadine Sutton
Marlene Bourke
Julia Reeb & familly
Roger Goldin
Jaime Caron
Herbert & Janet Hodis
Stephanie and Howard Moore
Elaine Jandu
Thea Hardigg
Myra Orlen
Ruth Barnert & Neil Birnbaum
Sheila & Jeffrey Carrel
Suzanne Dimartino
Sue Anne Basu
Lisa Kent

Robert Harris
Naomi Leavitt
Michael & Donna Faye Prolman
Lauren Whelihan
Sheila Murphy
John Tamburri
Gail Perlman
Renee Wetstein
Stan Schapiro
Elizabeth Hanssen
Susan Donnelly and Jennifer Levi
Don Frank & Ronnie Rom
Alison Reitzel
Charles Corbett
Sandro Frattura
Jennifer Corbett
Kathryn Corbett
Judy and Fred Krell
Celia Pastoriza


Sara Simmons
Sandra Dennis
Kathleen Rhine
Steven Garber & Bill Bonnet
Margaret Russo
Gretchen Saveson
Risa Silverman
Cori Lewis
Sallie G Deans
Amber Green
Julie Feinland
John Barber
BethAnn Albro-Fisher
Kimberly Quinlan
David Grill
Philip Korman
Carol Shaw
Rebecca J Gagnon  Hampshire County Bar Association

Ruth Barham
Hosea Baskin
Antonia & Ben Krell
Anni Reffsin
Kregg and Molly  Strehorn
Rebecca Neimark & Lee Spector 
Robert Ethier
Caroline Pastore
Kars Dodds
Lori Beston
Amanda Costin


Geoffrey Friedman
Maureen McMahon
Robert Brandt
Paul Benedict
Mary Klaes
Hun Ohm
Colleen Currie
Beth Gordon
Theresa Leroux
Kathleen Bowen
Glen Horrigan
Christine Jones
Marilyn Cohn
Brenna Lash
Christy Mann
Barry & Ellen Nigrosh
Jaime Rogers
Wendy Foxmyn
Trevor Maloney
Sean Sullivan
Tracy Magdalene
Michael Mulcahy
Michele Rooke
Jenine Cafarella
Jeanne Hoose
Marina Mazor
Ruth VonGoeler
Michael Fournier

Anne C Pratt
Tracey Levy
Steve & Cindy Chandler-Guy
Judi Wisch
Vivian Bresnitz
Steven Ostrovitz
Margot Glass
David Meyer
Linda Singer
Judith Averil
Jonathan Shapiro
Sarah Shapiro
Kara Rescia
Gregory White
Karen Brown, Sean Norton, Lucy and Sam
Nancy Reffsin
Judith Goldman and Sheldon Snodgrass
Devlin Farmer
Kelly Koch
Margery Heyl
Jessica Berrien
Heidi Nortonsmith
Nina Field
Welli Weiss
Laura Seftel
Anjali Zaldivar
Beth Eisenberg

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