Ethel Owens

May 14, 1923 ~ October 27, 2020 (age 97)


Educator and progressive activist Ethel Werfel Owens, 97, died on October 27, 2020 in Montclair, NJ.

White, Jewish and from Brooklyn, Ethel married a Black man from Memphis whom she met while teaching at Morehouse College. A graduate of Abraham Lincoln High School, Brooklyn College and the University of Chicago, Ethel became a gifted teacher and an evangelist for artistic sensibility and critical thinking as foundations for the nurturing of humanity and democracy.  Morehouse students included future Atlanta Mayor Maynard Jackson, Marxist scholar Finley Campell, New York Met Donn Clendenon, and future husband, Congressman Major Owens (D-NY).  In New York, Ethel also taught at NYU Adult Education, Marymount Manhattan College, and Medgar Evers College.

Ethel was predeceased by her former husband (they were divorced). She is mourned by her sons, Christopher, Geoffrey and Millard and their families, including four grandchildren, as well as friends and former students.  The family encourages everyone to visit

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Ethel Owens, please visit our floral store.


You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or by planting a memorial tree in the memory of Ethel Owens
© 2021 Martin's Home For Service Inc.. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy