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Obituaries & Tributes

Renee Diana Bergman

date of birth October 21 1925

date of death November 21 2011

Renee Diana (Berg) Bergman, 86, of Portland died Nov. 21, 2011 at Holladay Park Plaza.  She was born Oct. 21, 1925 in the Middle Village neighborhood in the borough of Queens in New York City to Sam and Jennie Berg, the younger of their two children. Her beloved brother, Irving, was seven years older.  At age 19, she graduated from New York University with a double major in literature and pre-med. Renee spoke often and lovingly of her childhood and education.

On July 10, 1945 she married Arthur Bergman, her brother’s best friend. They settled in Oregon after World War II and raised their family in West Linn.   In 1966 Renee earned her Master of Arts in teaching from Reed College in Portland and taught chemistry and physics at Roosevelt, Adams and Lincoln High Schools in Portland until her retirement in 1988.  From the late 1980s until 2009, Renee enjoyed living in a floating home on the Columbia River.

Her volunteer activities included B’nai B’rith and the Multnomah County Library in North Portland.  She participated in, enjoyed and actively supported the arts. She was a cellist and ballroom dancer and a fan of the Oregon Symphony, Chamber Music Northwest, opera and theater.  She was also involved in a number of political and social causes and was a champion of the underdog. She worked to get Clackamas Community College started; she was ecology-conscious and cared about recycling and nutrition; and she was interested in innovations such as induction burners and geodesic domes and how they could mean better ways of living.


Renee enjoyed unusual automobiles and owned a Fiat in the 1960s; a 1966 Barracuda that she drove until 2009; an Amphicar; and a 1985 Mazda RX7 that she had converted to an electric car in the early 1990s.  Her family describes her as smart, funny, generous, loving, supportive and independent, a real “do-it-yourselfer.” She will be greatly

Survivors include her son, Marc Bergman of West Linn; son and daughter-in-law, Barry and Marcia Bergman of West Linn; daughter and son-in-law, Julie and Wes Sandygren of Seattle; grandchildren, Geoff Bergman and his wife Cathy, Becky Bergman and her husband Joe Wilson, Joel Bergman and his wife Danielle, Adam Bergman, Nolan Sandygren and Lara Sandygren; sister-in-law, Harriet Berg; nieces, Kathie Berg and her husband Michael Dolan, and Amy Berg and her husband Hugh Douglas; nephew, David Berg; grandnieces, Ashley Dolan and Erin Berg; grandnephews, Will and Ethan Douglas and Caleb Berg; and best friend, Ann Moyes. She was preceded in death by her husband, Arthur, in 1969 and brother, Irving, in 1998.


Private inurnment was Nov. 27 at Beth Israel Cemetery in Portland.  A celebration of life will be held Sunday, Dec. 11, 2011 at noon at Holladay Park Plaza, 1300 N.E. 16th Ave., Portland.

Memorial contributions may be made to Oregon Food Bank or Oregon Humane Society.

Arrangements by Autumn Funerals, Cremation & Burial, Tigard, Oregon.

9 tribute candles have been lit

Candle lit by Staff at Autumn Funerals, Cremation & Burial Our sincere condolences.

Candle lit by Rob and Jan Brazeau

Candle lit by Gloria (Morillo) Jones She was my science teacher at Adams HS the last years it was open '79-'81. Wonderful lady. Sorry to hear she is Gone.

Candle lit by Mike, Jeanne & Rob Beyer

Candle lit by Karen Brazeau and James Bull She was a beautiful force of nature.

Candle lit by Karen Brazeau and James Bull She was a beautiful force of nature.

Candle lit by Barbara C. Ring She was my neighbor on the river for several years. I used to enjoy stopping by her patio, in my kayak, for a short visit. Sorry to hear of her death.

Candle lit by Your mom and dad were valued members of the parent group and both so charming and I do remember the Amphicar! Mike Clancy

Candle lit by Heather Hensley I had the great pleasure of taking care of Renee at The Plaza. She had a contagious smile, and could really brighten a room, without saying a word. We miss you, Renee.