~ Vanessa Dawn Edelen Badner Myerson ~
Vanessa Myerson passed away into the arms of her Savior on February 19, 2021, at the age of 85, while hospitalized for a respiratory illness (not Covid). Vanessa was a sixty-year resident of Thousand Oaks. Most knew her as Vanessa Allen, a respected musician and inspiring piano teacher.
Vanessa was born in 1935 in Urbana, Illinois, the first child of Alfred and Rose Carl Edelen. The family moved often to accommodate her father’s business opportunities. She spoke often of their home in a large, old 1704 farmhouse in rural Chester County, Pa. She grew up in a loving home emphasizing the importance of education as well as cultural pursuits and experiences.
Showing an early interest in music, Vanessa began piano lessons at the age of four at the Chicago Conservatory of Music. When the family moved to New York City, she was enrolled in the Juilliard Saturday School of Music for Talented Children. In 1943, her teacher entered a melody Vanessa had written in a national contest among outstanding music schools. The prize was to have the composition arranged for and performed by the NBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leopold Stokowski. Of the ten winners, she was the youngest at age eight.
Vanessa attended Junior High School in Larchmont, New York, and graduated from Downingtown High School in Pennsylvania in 1952, at the age of 16. She liked Downingtown High School and made many life-long friends. Vanessa received a full college scholarship and graduated from Penn State in 1956, at age 20, with a B.S. Degree in Business Psychology. She was a member of Kappa Delta Sorority. She participated in choirs, thespian groups, and later wrote arrangements for and sang in a sorority quartet called the K-Delts.
In 1956, she met and married Michael Badner, who was known professionally as Eddie Allen. In 1961, with two small children and a third on the way, they settled their young family in Thousand Oaks. In 1962, Eddie Allen Orchestra was formed, and soon became popular. When Eddie died unexpectedly in 1977, Vanessa kept the band going and continued teaching to support her family.
In 1982, she met professional guitarist Charlie Myerson, and they married a year later. They continued the band business, modernizing the 2–7 piece bands with more current music and instrumentation. Over 30 years, they played for more than 1300 social events.
Vanessa was fond of hearing bebop jazz performed live, and also enjoyed many years of playing music from the Great American Songbook, classic rock, Latin music, and traditional and modern church music.
Vanessa was a respected and well-loved piano teacher in the Conejo Valley for over fifty years. She enjoyed her young and older students, and cared about their success in music, and in life. She had been the president of the local Music Teachers Association, of which she had been a charter member in 1966. She taught into her eighties.
Inspired by her mother, Vanessa wrote her memoirs in the form of over 150 stories and vignettes. Her writings are a treasured gift to her family. She was a voracious reader who, in more recent years, read a book or more a week. Most of all, Vanessa cherished the time spent with her husband, children, and grandchildren.
Vanessa was a church musician almost her entire adult life including 14 years at Church of the Oaks. For the last 23 years, it had given her joy to play at the Freedom Assemblies of God Church in Thousand Oaks.
Vanessa will be sorely missed, and will be remembered by many for her kindness, understanding, wonderful smile, and devotion to her family, friends, students, and Church.
Vanessa is survived by her loving husband of 38 years, Charles Myerson; her children, Dawn Badner Kroker, Michael Badner Jr. and his wife Jennifer Badner, and Hope Badner Watterson; her grandchildren, Chloe Badner, Shane Kroker, Cameron Badner, Colin Watterson, and Quinn Badner; her siblings, Linda Edelen, Paul Edelen, Christa Selah, special nephew, Josiah Verkaik, and other much-loved family members.
She will be interred at the Conejo Mountain Memorial Park on March 12, 2021 at 1:00 PM.
...Family in the care of Erin Arteaga, Funeral Director
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