Select Page

2.21.20 Issue

Mildred “Millie” Altman passed gently away at the Rose Blumkin Jewish Home on Feb. 12. Services were held Feb. 16 at the Rose Blumkin Home.

She was preceded in death by her parents Sam and Bess Plotkin, husbands Sam Bailen, Hy Zavett, and Charles Altman, sons Harold and Eddie Bailen, stepson Michael Altman, brother Gerald Plotkin and sister and brother-in-law, Leonard and Ida Hall.

She is survived by son and daughter-in-law, Lew and Debby Bailen, daughter Sandra Bailen Scott, daughter and son-in-law, Eddie and Rena Bailen, stepsons and stepdaughter-in-law, Dennis and Ann Zavett, Errol and Mary Zavett and stepson, Ed Altman; sister-in-law, Sadie Plotkin, 20 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren.

After 107 years and outliving three loving husbands, Mildred Altman, known to all as Millie was born in Sioux City in 1912, as Mildred Plotkin, daughter of Sam and Bess Plotkin. She spent her childhood in Sioux City. She married Sam Bailen of Omaha in 1933, and the couple eventually ended up in Denison, IA, as owners of one of the first “supermarkets” in Iowa. They had four children, Harold, Eddie, Sandra and Lewis. Sam’s early death in 1955 at age 42 left Millie in charge of supporting the children until all graduated from Denison High School. Millie moved to Omaha in 1963 and worked for many years for the Crossroads Sears store. She married Hy Zavett in 1964, and they were together until his death in 1971. Millie was an obsessive crochet artist and over the years contributed 434 lap robes to the Rose Blumkin Jewish Home. She was a lifelong volunteer for various organizations, including many years for the JCC and the Love Group. Late in life she met Charles Altman and, after dating for a couple years, they, both in their 80s, eloped to Las Vegas in 1996 and enjoyed a short but happy life in Omaha before his death in 1997. Millie continued living in their apartment in Omaha until, in her 90s, she moved to Maple Ridge, and later, after her 100th birthday, she moved into the Rose Blumkin Jewish Home. There she lived (and played very successful bingo) until her final day.

Information on Millie’s life is held by the Iowa Women’s Archives at the University of Iowa Library. Her extensive scrapbooks are appreciated and studied as “social history” of young Jewish women in Iowa.

Memorials may be made to the Rose Blumkin Jewish Home in Millie’s name.