Resolution J1172-2013

Mourning the death of Borscht Belt matriarch Helen Kutsher, distinguished citizen and devoted member of her community



  • Apr 17, 2013: ADOPTED
  • Apr 10, 2013: REFERRED TO FINANCE


LEGISLATIVE  RESOLUTION  mourning  the  death  of Borscht Belt matriarch
Helen Kutsher, distinguished citizen and devoted member of her community

WHEREAS, It is the custom of this Legislative Body  to  pay  tribute  to
citizens  of  the  State  of  New York whose lifework and civic endeavor
served to enhance the quality of life in their communities and the great
State of New York; and
  WHEREAS, Helen Kutsher died on Saturday, March 23, 2013, at the age of
89; and
  WHEREAS, Helen Kutsher, a 1944 graduate of  SUNY  Delhi's  hospitality
program  and  the  face of her family-owned resort in the Catskill Moun-
tains for decades, spent much of her life in Monticello, New York, in  a
house  on  the  grounds  of Kutsher's Country Club; while the region was
open to any and all visitors, the Borscht Belt was so named due  to  the
largely  Jewish-American  clientele  that made the Catskills the primary
vacation destination for Jews in the northeastern United States; and
  WHEREAS, Helen Kutsher's family owned Kutsher's Country Club for  more
than 100 years, maintaining the resort while other prominent ones in the
area  had  closed  down; the family still owns the resort, though it was
leased three years ago to another operator; and
  WHEREAS, Helen Kutsher and her husband,  Milton,  who  died  in  1998,
operated  the resort together; Helen focused on the upkeep of the resort
and was its gracious hostess, while Milton handled  the  business  side;
  WHEREAS,  Many years ago, Milton Kutsher hired an athletic director, a
young Red Auerbach, who went on to fame as the championship coach of the
NBA Boston Celtics; in addition, he hired a young Wilt Chamberlain as  a
bellhop,  and the couple stayed friends with the NBA Hall of Famer until
his death in 1999; and
  WHEREAS, The resort featured performers  such  as  Milton  Berle,  Mel
Brooks,  Joan  Rivers,  Jackie  Mason,  Jerry Seinfeld, Harry Belafonte,
Billy Crystal and Tony Bennett, celebrities that the  Kutshers  came  to
know well and could call on to entertain if needed; and
  WHEREAS,  Helen Kutsher distinguished herself in her profession and by
her sincere dedication and substantial contribution to  the  welfare  of
her community; and
  WHEREAS,  Helen  Kutsher's commitment to excellence, and her spirit of
humanity, carried over into all fields of enterprise, including charita-
ble and civic endeavors; and
  WHEREAS, Helen Kutsher is survived by her  children,  Mark,  Mady  and
Karen  as  well  as  her  seven  grandchildren, Zach, Jennifer, Matthew,
Rachel, Rebecca, Sara and Josh, along with her four great-grandchildren,
Charlie, Eva, Brett and Samuel; and
  WHEREAS, Armed with a humanistic spirit and imbued  with  a  sense  of
compassion,  Helen Kutsher leaves behind a legacy which will long endure
the passage of time and will remain as a comforting memory  to  all  she
served and befriended; now, therefore, be it
  RESOLVED,  That  this  Legislative  Body pause in its deliberations to
mourn the death of Borscht Belt matriarch Helen  Kutsher,  distinguished
citizen and devoted member of her community; and be it further
  RESOLVED, That a copy of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be tran-
smitted to the family of Helen Kutsher.


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