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Odd S."Mickey" Gjerstad

July 27, 1936 ~ July 17, 2018 (age 81)
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Odd-Sigmund “Mickey” Gjerstad passed away on July 17, 2018 in Danbury CT at Regional Hospice of severe sepsis.

Mickey, the son of Ragnar-Sigmund Gjerstad and Ellen Kamstrup Petersen, was born in Oslo Norway on July 27, 1936. After living through the WWII German occupation of Norway, he attended school in Oslo. At 18, with his friend, Ivar Lie, he went to sea on the cargo ship SS Tomar as an engine “boy” for 18 months and saw the world, after which he went into what would be his life’s passion, the Norwegian Air Force, where he became a Master Sergeant specializing in jet engines. There he functioned as crew chief, and became a leader, teaching new mechanics their trade. He was a technical member of the NAF Flying Angels, a team that flew in air shows.

In 1968 he met Paula MacNamara and married her in 1969 after which they lived in Norway for four years, and his daughter, Marie, was born. In 1973 the family moved to the US and Mickey started his second career at Lighthouse Motors, the Saab dealership in Brewster NY as mechanic, then service manager and finally owner. He joined Rotary and enjoyed the friendship of other business people in the area. Through Rotary he became involved in welcoming people from other countries who came to visit at Rotary. In 2003 he finally retired, selling his Saab franchise back to Saab and his dealership property to someone who would continue to fix used cars there.

Mickey loved the water and owned a boat for some years that he loved taking out onto Lake Candlewood. He was very friendly and engaging, and there were many parties at the Gjerstad house over the years. He loved his daughter, and all her friends were welcome. He spent time teaching many of the guys motor things and other important skills. There was nothing mechanical that he couldn’t fix; many a dollar was saved through his skill with tools and his understanding of how things work.

Mickey is preceded in death by his mother, father, and brother Tore, and is survived by his wife, Paula, his daughter, Marie, granddaughters Sara and Danielle, his sister, Ellen Kåvin, and many brothers- and sisters-in-law, nephews and nieces in the US and Norway. Memorial donations may be made in Odd's name to Rotary Club of Danbury (PO Box 788 Danbury, CT 06813).

His cheerfulness and especially kindness will be sorely missed by all his family and friends.

A Memorial Mass will be held at St Elizabeth Seton Church, 520 Ridgebury Road, Ridgefield, on Saturday, July 28 at 10:30 a.m.

Donations may be made to:

Rotary Club of Danbury
PO Box 788, Danbury CT 06813

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