Elizabeth (Ottensoser) Gutman
Elizabeth Gutman died peacefully on Saturday, (May 17, 2008) after a very short illness and in the presence of her son Tom and grandson David. Elizabeth was born as Liesel Ottensoser on January 21, 1913 in Suhl Germany, a community in the Thuringia region. She enjoyed much of her youth in Erfurt Germany, growing to maturity in the bosom of a deep rooted family, especially with her brother, Kurt and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. Early during the bad years her parents arranged for her to learn the dress making trade in Paris. Paris made for an exiting time for her and her newly learned skills were to serve her very well during the coming years. They also arranged for Kurt to relocate to South Africa. On October 25, 1935 Liesel married Otto Gutman of Heidelberg Germany where they lived for two years. These years had become increasingly difficult and by 1937 it became economically necessary to leave Germany and the European Continent, so together they started a new life in America. America was still in the throws of its depression, so as with many others, her family had hard times during these early years. Fortunately, Elizabeth's excellence in the art of making and altering high fashion ladies clothes provided her with a rewarding career. She worked until retiring in the mid 1970's. For Elizabeth, New York was an exciting city and once in her blood became a life long love. This love included all the wonders that the city had to offer as well as a lovely beach cabana club less than one hour from home. In 1976, she and Otto retired to Southbury where they enjoyed 10 ideal years in Heritage Village, a lively community which became a latter day Catskill day camp for the new social security set. They also did the usual snow birding and bridge and from the beginning Elizabeth Volunteered for many causes, especially Hadassah. When Otto died Elizabeth moved to the McAuley in West Hartford. Here she would be near the family, and near the attractions that Hartford could offer. Here too she was able to volunteer for Hadassah and for the McAuley gift shop. She had a great spirit of adventure, and with nieces in South Africa and Australia she loved to travel to the far away places where they lived, even going on a safari with her brother and sister-in-law in Africa. She delighted in every opportunity to be with her family both near and far. With the passing years Elizabeth continued to play bridge regularly, and last year she traveled with the family to a wedding in Toronto. Although health problems developed, they were not debilitating and she was able to continue most activities until her last week. Elizabeth is survived by her son Tom of Hartford, grandson David and his wife Inez of Hillsborough, NJ, grandson Neil and his wife Darlene of Austin, TX and great grandchildren Nicole, Alexandra, and Aaron. The funeral service will be held Tuesday, May 20th at 12 noon at the Melchi Zedek Cemetery, Brookdale La., Waterbury. Memorial donations may be made to Hadassah, c/o Mrs. Frederick Helene, 43 Carlyle Rd., West Hartford, CT 06117. Funeral arrangements entrusted to Weinstein Mortuary. For further information, directions, or to share memories of Elizabeth Gutman with her family, please visit online at

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