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Dr. Donald Jay Mayer

July 17, 1932 February 20, 2023
Dr. Donald Jay Mayer
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Obituary for Dr. Donald Jay Mayer

Dr. Donald Jay Mayer passed away peacefully with his family by his side on February 20, 2023 at age 90. He had a long, happy and fulfilling life that was centered in the New York City area. Donald grew up in Washington Heights with his parents Adrienne and Monroe, and five younger siblings before heading to NYU for more than fifty years at the same institution, through medical school, residency, and lifelong service as an NYU Professor and later Chief of Surgery of the Manhattan VA Hospital, one of NYU’s affiliated hospitals. He mentored many aspiring surgeons and helped innumerable patients. Among many achievements in a distinguished career, he was a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. Donald lived most of his adult life in Westchester, first in Scarsdale and then in White Plains.

Aside from ongoing family responsibilities raising his children, Jeffrey, Pamela, Andrew and step daughter Jamie —including years as a widower and single parent before marrying Carol in 1984—he continued to build his medical career. Donald also found time to spend more than eight years as an officer in the National Guard Reserves, rising to the rank of Major.

Donald’s life was one of service, to his family, to his medical community, to the United States and to his friends and family. He was generous in lending his time and medical expertise to relatives, always with a calm and warm demeanor. As a physician, he assisted his great uncles, his parents and siblings, his wife and others through their very serious illnesses.

Having grown up in a large household, Donald was skilled at many tasks such as sewing, cooking, and woodworking. He used those to make his home welcoming and beautiful.

Donald enjoyed having fun. He loved to ski with his wife Carol, to travel with his siblings and their spouses, to play tennis and golf, to spend time entertaining his grandkids, and he always found the time to suddenly insert a funny wry remark when one least expected it.

Donald had a large and close-knit family. He was predeceased in death by his first wife Sondra, and by his brothers Robert and William. He is survived by his wife of nearly 40 years, Carol, his children Jeffrey (Yvonne), Pamela (Robert), and Andrew (Robin), his step daughter Jamie (Matt), many grandchildren or step grandchildren, Lucas (Malena), Michael, Isabella, Juliana, Ben, Alex, Annabel, Douglas, TJ, Kate, Alain, Melissa, Jonathan, and Luke, along with one great grandchild, Julian, and one great step grandchild, Trent. As the eldest of six children, he is survived by his much beloved younger brothers and sister, John (Kristy), Jane (Joe), and Tom (Musa), as well as his brother Robert’s widow Ina. He is also survived by Carol’s family, whom he considered his own, including Jenny and Joe, Zoe and Sophia, Amy and her husband Steven and her son James, Tom and Mirela and their son Christian. He was the patriarchal figure of a large and sprawling Mayer family, stretching from New York, to DC/Virginia, Colorado, California and beyond. All of these many people, and more, had a close and personal relationship with Donald.

Over many years of coping with the ravages of Parkinson’s Disease, Donald had wonderful caretakers, who along with his devoted wife did so much for him and whom he felt so close to, including CNAs Rehanna and Veneta and nurses Camille and Penny. And, among all the caretakers and support during those last difficult years, Donald was especially blessed by the devoted and ceaseless efforts of his daughter Pamela who coordinated his care and comforted Donald and Carol at their most difficult moments.

Donald will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

A Memorial Service will be held on Friday, February 24 at 12:00pm at Zion Memorial Chapel, 785 E. Boston Post Road, Mamaroneck. A link to watch the livestream will be available here just before the start of the service. 


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12:00 PM 2/24/2023 12:00:00 PM
Zion Memorial Chapel

785 E. Boston Post Road
Mamaroneck, NY 10543

Watch event

Zion Memorial Chapel
785 E. Boston Post Road Mamaroneck 10543 NY
United States

Cemetery Details


New Mount Carmel Final Resting Place

83-45 Cypress Hills Street
Glendale, NY 11385

83-45 Cypress Hills Street Glendale 11385 NY
United States

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