A photo of Gail Burgermaster

Gail Burgermaster 1950 - 2003

Gail Burgermaster (1950 - 2003)
Full legal name
Gail Burgermaster
Last Known Residence
Canaan, Columbia County, New York 12029
November 10, 1950
Newark, Essex County
New Jersey, United States
November 26, 2003
Gail Burgermaster of Canaan, Columbia County, New York was born on November 10, 1950 in Newark, Essex County, New Jersey United States to Gertrude C Burgermaster and George Burgermaster. She had siblings Bruce Burgermaster and Brenda Lengyel. Gail was baptized in 1956. Gail Burgermaster died at age 53 years old on November 26, 2003, and was buried on December 21, 2003 in New Lebanon, Columbia County, New York.

Gail Burgermaster's Biography

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About Gail


Gail was a professional chef, horticulturist, humanitarian, and artist. Her undergraduate studies were in fine arts through Cornell University, the University of Rochester, and Norwich University. Additionally, she spent nearly a decade studying horticulture and fine arts through an apprenticeship placement at the Rochester Folk Art Guild, where she was also a chef. At the RFAG she did both extensive sustainable farming and long-term artistic studies directly with an Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keefe understudy. Later, she worked on her PhD in education, doing extensive fieldwork in Africa and the Caribbean.

She also worked on a Nobel international relations initiative for decades as a language liaison and resource facilitator and she spent over half a decade doing housing advocacy and community integration work, for which she received national recognition.

She lived in NY with her family.
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Gail Burgermaster
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Full legal name
None stated
Other names or aliases

Name & aliases

Canaan, Columbia County, New York 12029
Last place lived

Last residence

November 10, 1950
Newark, Essex County, New Jersey United States
Birth location

Birth details


Ethnicity & Family History

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Nationality & Locations

Gail was an American citizen.


Cornell University, the University of Rochester, Norwich University: Bachelor of Arts; with extensive coursework and international fieldwork in education towards her PhD


Baptism date
New Jersey United States
Place of worship

Baptism date & location



Gail was a professional chef, horticulturist, artist, housing and community advocate, and community liaison; she was also a trained mediator. She did extensive humanitarian work and raised a family.

Personal Life

Gail contributed nearly a decade's worth of work to the Rochester Folk Art Guild, where she was a horticulture apprentice and a fine arts understudy in the direct traditions of Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keeffe. Gail had a lifelong relationship with Cornell University, where she took classes over the years; attended church, many lectures, and campus events; volunteered her time; and where her daughter attended school on invitation. Notably, Gail received special posthumous recognition in 2015 for her nearly lifelong work on a Nobel initiative. Gail Burgermaster was in a relationship with Thomas M.

Military Service

Gail's family had some minimal military background, with a focus on peacekeeping measures.
November 26, 2003
Death date
Cause of death
Death location

Death details

December 21, 2003
Funeral date
New Lebanon, Columbia County, New York 12125, United States
Burial location

Gravesite & burial


On Wednesday, November 26, 2003, Gail Burgermaster, loving mother, passed away just days past her birthday at the age of 53. Gail was born on November 10, 1950 in Newark, NJ to George and Gertrude (Clark) Burgermaster. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Norwich University in 1989, after prior coursework at Cornell University and the University of Rochester and a break to raise her family; she was completing her PhD in education at the time of her death. Gail loved art and photography. She had an extraordinary observational acumen for all artwork and enjoyed visiting countless art museums and galleries throughout New York City, Central and Upstate New York, Madrid, and Africa, among other places. She completed an extensive collection of her own pastels, watercolors, and ink and pencil drawings throughout her life, with a prolific addition of original pieces in calligraphy and traditional Chinese painting. She also loved the natural world and she blended her two main pastimes to create an extensive mixed media art portfolio, which she displayed at Norwich University for family and many friends. She contributed original artwork to local organizations for media use and volunteered considerable time to her communities. Gail loved classical literature and was a gifted writer. She had a deep appreciation for classical and social histories, which she also combined with her love of the natural world, often quoting writers like Thoreau, Yeats, and Steinbeck. She frequently told the story of how she came to love nature and art, sharing details about her observations of the seasons as a child, which she elaborated on in her thesis. She was an avid music lover, collecting many instruments over the years and attending countless local and intercontinental concerts. She was known for her adroit humor, observant worldview, exceptional devotion to her family and work, and her compassion. Gail was preceded in death by her father, George, and her mother, Gertrude. She is survived by her son, David, and her daughter, Elisabeth, her sister, her brother, and several cousins, nieces, and nephews.

Average Age & Life Expectancy

Gail Burgermaster lived 18 years shorter than the average Burgermaster family member when she died at the age of 53.
The average age of a Burgermaster family member is 71.

Memories: Stories & Photos

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Gail Burgermaster
A photo of Gail Burgermaster's artwork
Date & Place: in New York United States
Gail had deep penchants for art and the natural world with an unusual devotion. She was also a devoted mother and friend, world traveler, reader, educator, and humanitarian.

Family Tree & Friends

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1950 - 2003 World Events

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In 1950, in the year that Gail Burgermaster was born, in February, Joe McCarthy gave a speech alleging that he had a list of "members of the Communist Party and members of a spy ring" who worked in the State Department. He went on to chair a committee that investigated not only the State Department but also the administration of President Harry S. Truman, the Voice of America, and the U.S. Army for communist spies - until he was condemned by the U.S. Senate in 1954.

In 1969, Gail was 19 years old when on July 20th, the first men walked on the moon. Apollo 11 astronauts Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. both walked on the moon but it was Armstrong who first stepped on the moon. They fulfilled the promise of President Kennedy's commitment in 1961 to put a man on the moon before the end of the decade.

In 1977, Gail was 27 years old when on January 20th, Jimmy Carter became the 39th President of the United States. Running against incumbent Gerald Ford, he won 50.1% of the popular vote to Ford's 48.0%. He was elected to only one term.

In 1988, by the time she was 38 years old, on December 21st, Pan Am Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie Scotland. The explosion killed all 259 people on board and another 11 on the ground. The flight had left Heathrow Airport in London less than an hour before, on its way to New York. After an exhaustive (and long) investigation it came to be believed that two individuals from Libya had planted the bomb.

In 1994, when she was 44 years old, on May 6th, the Channel Tunnel or "Chunnel" was officially opened. The Chunnel is a railway tunnel beneath the English Channel that connects Great Britain to mainland France. Original plans for such a tunnel were developed in 1802 and approved by Napoleon Bonaparte but the British rejected the plan fearing that Napoleon would use the railway to invade.

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