Severin Grabin; Retired Rehabilitation Specialist

Severin Grabin, a former director of the rehabilitation program at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, has died in Los Angeles. He was 70.

A longtime resident of Woodland Hills, Grabin died Monday of cancer, said his son, Michael Grabin.

A Polish native, Grabin served as a lieutenant and a medical officer in the Polish Army Medical Corps during World War II and was honored with a medal of valor for helping many people escape Warsaw. He was captured by the Nazis, but because they did not realize he was Jewish, he was sent to a prisoner of war camp instead of a concentration camp. He was the only member of his family to survive the Holocaust.

After the war, he came to the United States and received postgraduate training at the University of Colorado. In 1951, he began working for Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, then Cedars of Lebanon Hospital, in the rehabilitation department. He served as rehabilitation coordinator from 1957 to 1970, until he was promoted to administrative director of physical medicine and rehabilitation. He retired in 1984.

From 1967 to 1984, Grabin was on the executive board of the Southern California chapter of the National Rehabilitation Assn. and served as president in 1973. He served on two of the mayor's advisory committees for the handicapped between 1976 and 1984.

He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Mary Elizabeth Grabin of Woodland Hills; sons Michael Adam Grabin of Woodland Hills and Richard Brooke Grabin of Sacramento; one step-grandson; and one step-grandaughter.

A funeral service is scheduled for today at 1 p.m. at Mount Sinai Memorial Park Chapel, 5950 Forest Lawn Drive, Los Angeles. Interment will follow at the same location.

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