The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

May 25, 2013

Ilene J. Daniels, 55, Lewisburg

The Daily Item

— LEWISBURG — Ilene Janice (Kutno) Daniels, 55, of Lewisburg, passed away on Saturday, May 25, 2013, at home surrounded by her loved ones after dealing with the challenges of multiple sclerosis for approximately two decades.

Ilene was born and raised in Bridgeport, Conn., a daughter of Rubin Kutno, of Bridgeport and the late Gertrude (Herzig).  

She received a BSW from Southern Connecticut State University and then earned her MSW from the University of California, Berkeley.  

She began her career working for Senator Laughton Child’s office on issues of aging in Washington, D.C.  She relocated to Israel in 1983, spending a year in the World Union of Jewish Students program, and then working in Tel Aviv with the Americans and Canadians in Israel agency. Ilene then traveled extensively in Europe and the Near East before returning to the United States, landing in Manhattan. In 1986, shifting gears significantly, she began a successful career in the financial industry, culminating in her position as associate vice president at Oppenheimer Funds where she was responsible for the management of the inside sales force.

The trajectory of her life took another significant shift in course in 1999, when she married the love of her life, Rich Daniels, and left big city life for rural central Pennsylvania. Over the next 14 years, she exchanged the professional activities of the corporate world for family life and a satisfying array of volunteer endeavors.

Ilene became an active and busy stepmom and devoted wife and daughter-in-law. She founded and then chaired the Lewisburg, PA MS support group for over 10 years and was active in both the Evangelical Community Hospital Hospice and Auxiliary. Ilene was also an active member of Congregation Beth El, Sunbury, serving as membership chairman and taking an active role in the capital campaign which successfully resulted in a new home for the congregation. Ilene and Rich were privileged to travel extensively throughout the United States and internationally during their marriage.  

One of Ilene’s greatest talents and pleasures was making and maintaining friendships near and far. Together with Rich, she hosted visitors from across the country and from around the globe in the central Pennsylvania home they had built together.

Ilene is survived by her loving husband of 14 years, Dr. Richard Daniels, of Lewisburg; her father, Rubin Kutno, of Bridgeport, Conn.; one brother, Larry (Donna) Kutno, of Brandon, Fla.; one sister, Karen (Bill Gherard) Kutno, of Trumbull, Conn.; nephews, David Gherard, Jason Kutno and Michael Gherard; stepson, Ron Daniels, of Sunbury; uncles, Aly Kutno and Irving Kutno; and many loving cousins.

She was preceded in death by her mother, Gert Kutno; her aunt, Sylvia Schrenley; stepson, Ryan Daniels; and her especially beloved uncle, Marvin Kutno.

A memorial service celebrating Ilene’s life will take place at 1 p.m. today in Congregation Beth El, 249 Arch St., Sunbury.

Contributions in Ilene’s memory may be made to the following: The National MS Society, Central Pennsylvania Chapter, 2040 Linglestown Road, Ste. 104, Harrisburg, PA 17710, the Ryan Daniels Memorial Fund of the Congregation Beth El Endowment, 249 Arch St., Sunbury, PA 17801, or Evangelical Community Hospital Hospice, One Hospital Drive, Lewisburg, PA 17837.

Arrangements are being handled by The Dale E. Ranck Funeral Service, 125 N. Front St., Milton, PA.

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