Rogers Funeral Home and Cremation Services
is located at 380 Cambridge Street,
Cambridge, MA 02141
Please call us at 617-876-8964
or contact us here

Rogers and Hutchins Funeral Home
and Cremation Services
is located at 292 Massachusetts Avenue,
Arlington, MA 02474
Please call us at 781-641-0292
or contact us here

Our Locations



Amanda Bullard Sobel

1973 - 2023 

Amanda Bullard Sobel, a gifted writing teacher, linguist, musician, potter, cook, and gardener, died early Friday morning, April 21. She had only just turned fifty. Afflicted since childhood with type one diabetes, she faced a series of health crises in recent years that gradually curtailed her abilities to do the things she loved. Throughout those trials she stayed close to her friends and family, and maintained an indoor arboretum of more than one hundred plants. With prescribed exercise, meditation, and determination, she tried hard to revive the energy that had once enabled her to work out daily at a gym and walk miles for recreation. On April 9 she suffered two simultaneous strokes, from which she could not recover. 

As an advisor and lecturer on the staff of the MIT Writing and Communication Center, she taught students how to improve their term papers and helped professors clarify their research findings for publication or presentation at professional meetings. Performing her job required Amanda to absorb a variety of esoteric and technical topics, and she considered the constant learning opportunity a great plus. Given the international character of MIT, she often assisted writers for whom English was a second or even a third language.  

In addition to her own mastery of English, she spoke French. Italian, Hindi, and others, having pursued Sanskrit and medieval Welsh as an undergraduate and graduate student at Harvard. Her knowledge of plants, which she acquired through self-study and hands-in-dirt experience, included the genus-and-species names of everything she grew herself or admired from a distance. When she took up ceramics in the MIT pottery center, she made flower pots as well as platters, mugs, and bowls. As a chef, she favored Korean cuisine.

Amanda was born April 15, 1973, in Ithaca, NY. Because her parents, Michael and Pamela Cook Sobel, moved house often, she grew up partly on Cape Cod, later in Connecticut, and also in Cambridge, Mass., where she settled as an adult. A life-long cat lover, she doted on a series of pets with names plucked from many cultures, including the Chinese goddess Kwan-Yin and Pellinore of Arthurian legend.  

Amanda’s parents predeceased her, but she is survived by her brothers, Jeremy Sobel of Atlanta and Daniel Sobel of Silver Springs, MD.

Here is something characteristic that she wrote in 2021, describing her work and her interpersonal relationships: 

Sometimes life is ticking along, and then, suddenly, it becomes one of those 5000-piece jigsaw puzzles, but out of its box, jumbled on the floor, missing a few pieces, and seemingly impossible to put together again. 

I work with people on jigsaw puzzles. When life shatters something they're in the middle of, I empower them to look for the pieces, to hold onto those pieces, to see potential in those pieces, and to fit them together, often in new ways.

I work with people who know, somewhere within themselves, that they can and will work on this jigsaw puzzle. They are creative, resilient and determined. They could benefit from support, though, in both living, practically, after having lost, and in thriving after devastation. 

There is more than one way to solve a puzzle. And, even after change, after loss, we can make peace with—and gain in innumerable ways from—a missing piece. 


A private burial will take place soon at Mt. Auburn Cemetery, to be followed some weeks later by a memorial service at an as yet undecided location.

Donations in Amanda’s honor, either to a favorite charity or to the Arnold Arboretum in Boston, would be a fitting tribute to her generous spirit.