Heather L. Kedar, 46, of Newtown, a dentist who bravely fought acute myeloid leukemia, died of complications from the disease Thursday, Dec. 3, at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Kedar was diagnosed in 2008. She underwent a bone marrow transplant in 2010, and a year later, was given a clean bill of health and cleared to work again, according to her husband, Yinon Kedar. Then, in December 2019, the cancer returned, in a slightly different, more severe form.
“Every 18 minutes or so another life-threatening thing is happening,” her husband said. “The grind is incredibly difficult, and the mental side is devastating as well. She is the bravest person I have ever met, and I love her more every day.”
Her family described Dr. Kedar as strong-willed, and when she was in remission, able to juggle roles as a dentist, wife, and mother with service to the Jewish community. She was witty, gracious, and attentive to others. “She always asked how everyone else was,” her family said in a tribute. “She never complained, ever.”
Born in Philadelphia to Edward Mutchnick and Carole Wascow, she graduated from Lower Moreland High School, Pennsylvania State University in 1996, and Temple University Dental School in 2000.
She was the lead practitioner at Lifetime Dental of Langhorne in the Woodbourne Square Shopping Center for 19 years, ending on Dec. 12, 2019, when she retired for health reasons.
Her friend Juliet Shavit said Dr. Kedar differed from many dentists, who steer patients away from sweets, due to her fondness for candy. “She was the only candy-eating dentist I know of,” Shavit said.
Dr. Kedar made herself available to patients whenever they needed her. She consulted on a case when Rabbi Ira Budow, the longtime director of Abrams Hebrew Academy in Yardley, was traveling in the Mideast.
“I called her from Israel with a dental problem, and she didn’t hesitate to call me back and was fortunately able to help me,” Budow said on PhillyJewishlink.com.
She was a mentor to colleagues. “Heather was a great friend who I had the pleasure of meeting and knowing in dental school,” Joseph Chipriano posted online. “As a student a year ahead of me in school, she offered me help and support as I maneuvered my way through Temple.”
She married Kedar, a sales consultant for computer solutions products, in 2002. They had two children, whom they raised in Newtown.
When not in her dental office, she enjoyed spending time with family, traveling, watching movies, and going scuba diving. “More than anything else, she enjoyed watching the kids play sports,” her husband said.
She was a member of the Chabad Lubavitch of Bucks County, a synagogue that sponsors social events, holiday outreach, and educational programs for adults and children. She raised money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and the synagogue.
In addition to her husband, Yinon, she is survived by a son, Leor; a daughter, Hannah; her father, Edward Mutchnick; mother, now Carole Zeitz; nieces and nephews; and a large extended family.
Services and interment were Friday, Dec. 4, at Forest Hills/Shalom Memorial Park in Huntingdon Valley.
Memorial donations may be made to: https://www.gofundme.com/f/369rrt-hugs-for-heather. The fund is being sponsored by friends of Dr. Kedar.