Franklin Behrens Obituary

April 5, 2016

    Franklin “Frank” Behrens, 79, of Keene passed away peacefully April 2, 2016, at home after a long illness. He was much beloved in the Keene community as a teacher, actor, writer and lecturer.

He was born in the Bronx, N.Y., July 1, 1936, where he attended the Bronx High School of Science. He received his Bachelor of Arts from City College of New York and his Master of Arts in English from Lehigh University. He spent his career as a New York City junior high school English teacher until his retirement in 1991, when he resettled in Keene.

Mr. Behrens had a lifetime love of theater, classical music, opera and operetta, especially Gilbert and Sullivan. He lectured for the CALL Program at Keene State College, the New Hampshire Humanities Council, the OSHER Life Long Learning Institute and the Roads Scholar Program at Pilgrim Pines. He also taught mathematics at Keene State College and tutored math in his home. His publications include: “Dante’s Infernal Guide to Your School,” published by Simon & Schuster, 1971 and numerous articles and columns for a variety of journals and newspapers, including music and television reviews in The Keene Sentinel, the Brattleboro Reformer, Entertainment Times and the Richmond Rooster. A blog of his reviews can be found at

 He was also a board member of the Branch River Theater and directed many productions, including “Cox and Box” and “Archy and Mehitabel.” With his wife, Catherine, he co-founded the Hourglass Readers and performed in many of their productions.

His hobbies included collecting classic movies, woodworking (especially constructing bookshelves), reading science fiction and studying mathematics. Even in his last months he had reread all of Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation” novels, a favorite of his youth.

Survivors include his wife, Catherine; his daughter, Susan and her husband, Tony Sarowitz; his son, Richard and his wife, Anna; and his brother, Jesse and his wife, Gloria; as well as extended family.