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Georg Steinmeyer

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Georg Steinmeyer Obituary
Georg Friedrich Steinmeyer

1924 - 2015 VERNON Georg Fried-rich Steinmeyer, 91, of Vernon, passed away on Thursday, April 9, at Vernon Green Nursing Home. He was born in Oettingen, Bavaria, Germany on March 1, 1924. Upon completion of high school, he was immediately drafted into the German Army. His obligatory military service during World War II included infantry action in Yugoslavia, the Russian front, and Denmark. At the conclusion of World War II he began his formal training as an organ builder in his family's business, Steinmeyer Organ Company. He traveled to the United States for the first time in 1950 as part of a program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor for technical cooperation with other governments. He apprenticed with the Aeolian Skinner Organ Company. During this time he met the renowned organist E. Power Biggs with whom in traveled in 1954 to record for Columbia Records historic and other significant organs in Southern Germany. In 1953, he met his wife, Hanne, at an American School in Nurnberg and married in 1954. In 1955, they immigrated to United States with their first daughter, Charlotte, and settled in Brattleboro heading up the pipe organ division of the Estey Organ Company. First and foremost, Georg considered himself an organ builder. After the closure of the Estey Organ Company, his love for Vermont kept him in Brattleboro. He worked as Fuller Brush man, worked in life insurance, and eventually began working for the School for International Training in 1964. While working he earned a Master's Degree in 1974 from the University of Massachusetts in Education Administration - despite never having completed college. In 1974 he began working at Amherst High School, first as an assistant Principal and then as Department Chair for Foreign Languages at the Junior/Senior High School and German Teacher. He retired in 1992. Georg was an active board member and President of both the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Association of Teachers of German as well as the Massachusetts Association of Foreign Language Teachers. In 2000, he was honored as Massachusetts German Educator of the Year. In 1975 in Amherst, Mass., he initiated an exchange program with a college preparatory high school in Germany in which both Amherst and Brattleboro High School Students participated and the program continues to this day. Throughout his life in Brattleboro he was a strong supporter in many ways of the Brattleboro Music Center, which gave him and his wife great joy. Since his retirement he was a consultant for the School for International Training language proficiency testing, he served on the board of the Vermont Arts Council, the Brattleboro Music Center and the New England Bach Festival. He was also a Charter member of the Estey Organ Museum, a member of the Speakers Bureau of the Vermont Humanities Council and an active member of the Organ Historical Society. Georg had a love of traveling, adventure, and learning about other cultures. He traveled extensively throughout the United States and Europe. He also traveled to Japan, The People's Republic of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. He loved the outdoors; especially cross country skiing and kayaking. He loved photography, and classical and organ music. Georg will be remembered for his endless positive spirit, optimism, enthusiasm, his love of learning and never give up attitude. He is predeceased by his wife of 60 years, Hanne, in 2015; and a daughter, Charlotte, in 1971. He is survived by a daughter, Elisabeth Luke and her husband, John, of Shorewood, Minn.; and three grandsons, Tanner, Keaton, and Justin. FUNERAL NOTICE: A Funeral Service will be celebrated on Saturday. May 23, at 11 a.m. at St. Michael's Episcopal Church, 16 Bradley Ave, Brattleboro, VT 05301. The KER-WESTERLUND FUNERAL HOME is assisting the family with arrangements. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Brattleboro Music Center, 38 Walnut St., Brattleboro, VT 05301. Condolences may be offered at www.kerwesterlund.com.
Published in Brattleboro Reformer on Apr. 11, 2015
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