Ivy Berman Buhl entered eternal life on Saturday, July 13th from Monterey, California at the youthful age of 80.
She was an inspiration to her family and her wide circle of friends and influence, to live life to the fullest, to love with all one's heart, and to serve the Creator with purpose.
She lived an extraordinary and varied life, prone to taking great leaps of faith and creating networks of loving friends wherever she went.
Born in Troy, Alabama, she moved to Montgomery at a young age. Graduating from Lanier High School, she received an AA degree from Stephen’s College and a BA from Auburn University.
She also took speech courses at Huntington and earned her teacher’s certificate. She taught speech and drama at Cloverdale High School, where her students adored her. She was also involved in many civic and charitable endeavors.
She and her husband, Knight Berman Sr., enjoyed the theatrical community in Montgomery, where she acted, and even directed, plays at the Montgomery Little Theater, Huntingdon College, and for the ’70-’71 Youth Concert Series.
On one trip to New York, she and Knight saw nine, stage productions (plays, musicals, opera). The two of them would often recount stories of their favorite shows to family. Once, after recounting the entire production of an opera tale in vivid and expressive detail, the dazzled listeners asked when they had seen it. After a few moments of reflection, it dawned on them they had not seen it but had only listened to the album together several times.
From earning her pilot’s license to whitewater rafting to traveling to motorcycling to bungee jumping to scuba diving ~ Ivy enjoyed exhilarating adventures. By keeping active and going to the gym, even up to a couple of weeks before she passed, she redefined age to everyone who met her.
When Ivy was first exposed to a friend who had become “born again” she rolled her eyes in disdain. Indeed, she had at one point in her career, after her divorce from Knight, raised her fist to heaven just to let God know she “did it on her own.” However, when the Lord got a hold of her, He became the Light of her life, and she served him with charisma and wholehearted devotion.
She worked in women’s ministry at Eastwood Church ~ as well as spoke at many engagements, luncheons, and retreats to women throughout Alabama. She adored her church family, often initiating good-hearted pranks, and welcomed people into her home at any time. One cousin recalls, “there were always people at her home whenever I drove up ~ cars in the driveway, people on the lawn ... in the house.”
From being the first female television news anchor at channel WSFA in Alabama, to reinventing herself as an international speaker during her 50's and yet again, transforming in her 60's by gaining her 2nd master's degree and launching a whole new career in Biblical Counseling in California, where she could be close to her grandkids ~ she was constantly a source of joy and inspiration to all who knew her.
During her years in Monterey, California, she invested loving involvement in her children and grandchildren, always attending school activities and events.
She delighted in creating a beautiful home with her devoted husband Clay, who brought such adoring love and joy into her life. She was a hostess extraordinaire, and she and Clay enjoyed opening their home for Bible studies, family gatherings and parties in her (long-dreamed-of) Monterey Bay oceanview home. They also enjoyed many travels together, among them: Alaska, Mexico, Italy, Australia, and New Zealand.
Her daughter recalls there were two things countless people said to her when they found out Ivy was her mother.
The first was always spoken in an incredulous tone "Your mom's Ivy Berman!?!?" When she heard this even in the far reaches of Monterey, she laughed and realized her mother will always be a celebrity to those who watched her on TV.
The second statement, expressed by many of Ivy’s friends and people she had counseled, was usually accompanied by embracing her, and resounding with resolute devotion, "You have NO idea how much your mom has helped me. She has changed my life so much.”
She is preceded by her father Dr. Harold Douglas Mauk, mother Madeline Williams Mauk, brother Bill Mauk, brother Dr. Bryant Douglas Mauk, first husband Knight Harris Berman, brother-in-law Fred Berman, and father and mother-in-law Izzy and Jean Berman.
Her spirit is carried on by her loving husband Dr. Clay Buhl, her children Knight Harris Berman, Jr. (partner Kate Campbell), and Victoria Berman Ausonio (husband Andrew Ausonio, children Amanda Ivy Ausonio and Andrew Dante Ausonio) and stepdaughter Angel Abdelazim (husband Sam Abdelazim and child Jovan), and many nieces, nephews, friends, and family who were much loved by her.
Contributions in Ivy's memory may be sent to The Bridge Restoration Ministry in Pacific Grove, California.
Visit thepaulmortuary.com to read the more detailed obituary, sign Ivy's guest book, and share thoughts or memories with the family, to comfort them in this time.
The family would like to extend their heartfelt gratitude to all who enriched Ivy's life with love, friendship, and prayers.
Memorial service will be held on Saturday, August 3rd, at 10 am at Calvary Chapel Monterey on Highway 68.
Published in The Monterey Herald on July 28, 2019