Adeline Rappaport, 83, Passion Was World Travel

Adeline Rappaport, widow of Island physician David Rappaport, died Thursday in Boston. She was 83.

Mrs. Rappaport was born in Lancaster, Pa., but spent most of her life on the Vineyard. Her grandfather, Benjamin Hall, moved to Edgartown from Boston in the late 1800s. Mrs. Rappaport's parents, Morris and Rose Hall, were proprietor's of Halls Department Store on Main street in Edgartown. The store was well known for its reddish-tone trousers, a fashion statement synonymous with Edgartown beginning in the 1950s.

A graduate of Edgartown High School, Mrs. Rappaport attended Wellesley College and majored in economics. She met David Rappaport on a blind date while he was in medical school. The couple married and moved to the Vineyard after World War II. Dr. Rappaport practiced medicine in Oak Bluffs from 1946 until his death in 1982.

Mrs. Rappaport had a sharp intellect. She also had the gift of tact. "She was the doctor's wife," said longtime friend Helen Issokson. "Very cool. Very calm and collected."

Being the doctor's wife also made Mrs. Rappaport very independent: she had to be because she never knew when Dr. Rappaport might be called away. She made sure the household, which included the Rappaport's three children, ran smoothly no matter her husband's schedule. She even managed to return to school, earning a master's degree in education from Northeastern University in 1970. She was certified to teach that same year by the Commonwealth. She tutored children with reading disabilities and used her knowledge while serving on the Oak Bluffs School Committee, one of her many civic responsibilities.

Mrs. Rappaport loved golf. She loved bridge - when the Rappaports first moved to the Vineyard they lived above Dr. Rappaport's office on Circuit avenue. Optometrist Bernard Issokson also had office space in the building. "When things were really slow, the four of us would go upstairs and play bridge," Mrs. Issokson recalled.

But what Mrs. Rappaport really loved was travel. At the time of her death, she had traveled to almost 100 countries. She visited major cities, and out-of-the-way places. Her passion for travel led her to open Dukes Travel Service in 1973 with Audrey LeVasseur. She ran the business until her retirement to Sarasota, Fla. in the late 1980s.

After her retirement, Mrs. Rappaport spent summers on the Vineyard and winters in Florida. Three years ago, after her health began to fail, she moved to the Boston area to be nearer to her children. She is survived by Susan of Chestnut Hill, Ronald of Chilmark, and Alan of Bronxville, N.Y. She is also survived by five grandchildren.

Services will be held at the Martha's Vineyard Hebrew Center, Sunday, April 4, at noon. Contributions may be made to the Dr. David Rappaport Scholarship Fund, care of the Permanent Endowment Fund of Martha's Vineyard, P.O. Box 602, West Tisbury, MA 02575, which was established to encourage interest in health care among graduates of the Martha's Vineyard Regional High School.