Obituary of Milton H. Gelzer
We mourn the passing of Hon. Milton H. Gelzer, JSC (ret), husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. Milt was born to Abraham and Fannie Gelzer in Jersey City in 1933. His youthful interests in sports and music led him to participate in football and track in high school, as well as playing the accordion at weddings and parties. He excelled in the Boy Scouts, earning the coveted rank of Eagle Scout, being elected to the Order of the Arrow, and making lifelong friends at Kamp Henry Kohl.
A loyal son of Rutgers, Milt earned his bachelor's degree in history and his law degree there, as well as meeting the love of his life, Janice Smith. The young couple settled in her hometown of Toms River, where he took a clerkship with the law firm of Hiering and Grasso. The clerkship grew into partnership, and eventually his own law firm: Gelzer, Kelaher, Shea & Novy. Milt practiced real estate and family law, but was particularly renowned for his expertise in education law, representing the Boards of Education of nine Ocean County schools. He had an easy rapport with clients, colleagues, and even adversaries. Milt was a longtime member of the Ocean County Bar Association, serving a term as president. The crowning achievement of his career was the ten years he spent as a Superior Court judge. Known for his fair, practical approach to settling cases, he was popular with attorneys, his fellow judges, and court house staff.
Milt was a member of Congregation B'nai Israel, serving on the Board of Directors, and as Vice President. He served as Youth Commissioner and coached the USY basketball team. He always supported youth activities, including as a friend and welcome guest of his grandsons' Boy Scout troop.
Milton Gelzer is predeceased by his parents, as well as his brother Austin Gelzer. He is survived by his wife, Janice Smith Gelzer; his daughter Marjorie Nydell and son-in-law Matt; his daughter Regina Gelzer. He also leaves his grandsons, Jonathan Nydell and wife Kathryn; Samuel Edelson; Benjamin Edelson; and great-granddaughter Leila Nydell.
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