East Penn Press

Sunday, May 28, 2017
Annabelle Helen Dittbrenner Annabelle Helen Dittbrenner

Annabelle Helen Dittbrenner

Thursday, May 18, 2017 by The Press in Obituaries

of Salisbury Township

Annabelle Helen Dittbrenner, 86, of Salisbury Township, died peacefully May 8, 2017, in Lehigh Valley Health Network. She was the wife of the late John Hartman “Jack” Dittbrenner Jr. Born in Lowhill Township, she was a daughter of the late Henry William and Estella Elizabeth (Hillegass) Pforr.

She was a 1948 graduate of Emmaus High School and a 1951 graduate of Allentown Hospital School of Nursing and was a registered nurse.

From 1952 to 1971, she was a staff nurse at Allentown Hospital, progressing from general duty to head nurse to supervisor of psychiatry. From 1962 to 1971, she served as administrative director of the Allentown Alcoholic Counseling Center Outpatient Clinic. From 1971 to 1973, she was coordinator of Northeastern PA Alcoholism Detox & Rehab Center in Northampton. From 1973 to 1993, she was the executive director, Office of Drug and Alcohol Abuse Services, Lehigh County Department of Human Services, Allentown. Following her retirement in 1993, she was employed by Treatment Trends of Allentown, from 1996 until May of 2017 as coordinator of quality assurance.

Throughout her long career, she pursued post-graduate course work and continuing education at numerous institutions, including Muhlenberg College, University of Pennsylvania, Wilkes College, Cedar Crest College, Yale University and University of Pittsburgh.

Her community involvement throughout the years included serving as an executive board member of Lehigh County Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (1965-1973), Vice Chairperson, ALERT Partnership for a Drug Free Valley (1991-1993), Chairperson, Lehigh Valley AIDS NET Regional Allocation Subcommittee (1993-1995).

Among her many awards and honors, she received the Allentown YWCA Women’s Leadership Award in 1993 and a Meritorious Service Award - Lehigh & Northampton counties Drug & Alcohol Advisory Boards (1997).

Throughout her life, she was a self-described “quiet feminist.” She enjoyed traveling and experiencing life with her late husband, reading a good book, wine tasting, and socializing with friends and family members.

She is survived by a sister, Rev. Kathleen A. Pforr, of Mentor, Ohio; numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by a brother, Adam F. Henritzy.

Contributions may be made to Treatment Trends, Inc. 24 S. Fifth St., Allentown, 18101.

A “Celebration of Life Gathering” honoring both she and her late husband will be held at Luther Crest, main building., 800 Hausman Road, Allentown, 1 to 4 p.m. June 10 Arrangements were made by the Stephens Funeral Home, Inc., Allentown.