Mr. George Paul Goldbeck, devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle, has left his earthly home to be with the Lord. George was a complicated mix of determination and tenderness – a successful businessman and perfectionist who gave generously to charity and had a soft spot for the underdog. When he and Carmen moved to the NJ suburbs from Brooklyn, NY in 1955 their home became the weekend vacation spot for all their family and friends from The City. Music, singing and dancing were often on tap, along with water gun fights, badminton, sack races and lots of other fun.
His blue eyes were often steely; but they had a twinkle that hinted at his humor, generosity and kindness. He loved his family and enjoyed being surrounded by the laughter and commotion of his grandchildren on the beach vacations and cruises that he enjoyed planning. He loved gardening and maintained a beautiful backyard flower garden in Scotch Plains, where he and wife Carmen raised their family and maintained a home for nearly 50 years. After retirement he volunteered for SAGE and enjoyed frequent trips to Atlantic City.
George was the son of Gertrude and Bruno Goldbeck, who immigrated to the United States from Berlin, Germany to East Rutherford, NJ in the early 1900s. His childhood was marked by serious illness, including scarlet fever and severe blood poisoning that nearly cost him his legs. The doctors wanted to amputate but his father would not allow it. When George was a teenager, his older brother Mal left for the armed forces and his beloved mother Gertrude contracted bone cancer. George hurried home from school to relieve the nurse and care for his mom while his father minded the jewelry store that he had opened after arriving from Germany. She passed away when he was 15.
George graduated from East Rutherford High School, where he was known for his debating skills. Some suggested he enjoyed “an argument for argument’s sake,” but that’s a point that George would argue ). At age 17 during WWII, he joined the army air corps. He came back to East Rutherford after the war and could be seen traveling around town in a 12 cylinder Lincoln Zephyr. His love of cars continued throughout his life - At age 92, he could still be seen behind the wheel of his Jaguar XKR convertible.
George and Carmen were married 61 years. He was with her every day when she was in hospice, and his loving care and tenderness during her months there will be long remembered. His mischievous spirit will be missed by his children, Paul (Anna), Joanne (Glenn), and Robert (Kathy); his brother-in-law, Joe (Denise); his grandchildren, Kieran, Lydia, Madeline, Carolynne, Jacqueline, Heather and Colin; nephews George, (Debbie) Pat and Joseph (Kerry); his niece Kassandra (Austin); and all those in his extended family. Go in peace George. You have earned your rest. The physical constraints, the pain and the indignities of failing health are now just a memory. You will walk together again with Carmen, your loving wife. Your legs will be strong and the pain will be gone. She will thank you for the way you devoted yourself to her care when she was in hospice and you will show her how light you are on your feet as the Latin rhythms play and you dance together under the stars.
Know that we love you now and will love you always. We will see you again one day in Heaven. Until then, God bless you and keep you forever.
Friends and family are invited to gather beginning at 10 am Saturday 5/19 at the Parkway Wozniak Memorial Home 211 Westfield Ave. Clark, NJ 07066. The funeral service will begin at 12 noon at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Covenant House (www.covenanthouse.org), the Mountainside Library (www.mountainsidelibrary.org/friends_of_the_library) , or to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital (www.stjude.org).