Andrea Lynn Kelmachter

Andrea Kelmachter, 61, an English teacher at Cheshire High School, died Thursday, March 24, 2011 at Connecticut Hospice in Branford, CT.  She had lung cancer. Mrs. Kelmachter taught grades 10 thru 12 at Cheshire High School for 14 years prior to her death.  Before that she taught at Gateway Community College, Cheshire Academy, and as a long-term substitute and home-bound tutor for the Cheshire School System. Andrea Lynn Kelmachter was born in New Haven, CT but grew up across the globe.  During her childhood she lived in far flung places such as Alamogordo, New Mexico, Edwards Air Force Base, California, and RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk, England.  She returned to New Haven in her teens and graduated from Hillhouse High School in 1967. After graduating high school, Mrs. Kelmachter attended Syracuse University, receiving a Bachelor’s degree in English in 1971.  She later received a Master’s degree in British Literature from George Mason University in 1978. An avid reader and literature lover, advising Cheshire High School’s literary group for several years and enjoying a wide array of books from classic literature to murder mysteries.  Her favorite book to teach was Our Town by Thornton Wilder, and found great meaning in its message to seize every day and enjoy the little details of life to their fullest. She is survived by her husband, Barry L. Kelmachter, daughter Heather J. (Kelmachter) Salon and her husband Neil Salon of Boston, MA, and son Michael Z. Kelmachter and his wife Kai Kelmachter of Fairfax, VA.  She has one granddaughter, Lila, age 2.

Funeral service at Temple Beth David, 3 Main St., Cheshire Friday morning at 11. The interment will be in the Beaverdale Memorial Park, Pine Rock Ave., New Haven. Period of mourning will be observed at the Kelmachter residence, 75 Meadowbrook Pl., Cheshire through Sunday evening. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society.


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  1. Karen Sova said,

    03.24.11 at 5:22 pm

    I did not get the chance to know Andrea but have heard many stories from my colleagues who did have the pleasure and promise to know and work with her. I feel somehow I missed out on knowing a very special, committed, and inspirational teacher here at Cheshire High School. As you morn and then remember over your 3 days of Shiva know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. May you remember the sunshine before the rain and may you remember the laughter before the tears. May the sun shine on your backs and may the laughter ring in your hearts.

    All my best,
    Karen Sova

  2. Don and Ronda Hendel said,

    03.24.11 at 7:30 pm

    Our hearts go out to the entire Kelmachter family. Andrea was a good friend. We will always remember our dinners together.

  3. Sharon Powers said,

    03.25.11 at 1:33 pm

    I taught at Cheshire High School these past eleven years with Andrea. I came to know her as a kind, caring human being and a dedicated teacher. She loved literature and sharing her knowledge with her students. She also loved her family very much and spoke often of them especially her granddaughter. She will be missed greatly. My condolences go out to her family, colleagues and friends.

  4. Sarah Redford said,

    03.25.11 at 9:25 pm

    I taught in the English department with Andrea for only six years, but both of my children have a small token of her kindness and craft in the stuffed and knitted bunnies she made for each of their births. She shared many joys of her own granddaughter, Lila, and frequently showed me picture books and photo calendars with such pride- she commented on every picture! Like Andy, may we all listen and tell the stories of life’s littlest moments with pride.

  5. Mary Jack said,

    03.26.11 at 10:43 am

    I was so very fortunate to have known Andy for more than 30 years – a long-distance friendship founded on letter writing, phone calls, and an occasional visit – years filled with conversations of literature, education, quiltmaking, and family. I have always been impressed by her professionalism, passion for literature, dedication to her students, and to learning. Those qualities along with her resilience, strength of character, love of family, loyalty to friends, and quick wit made her a unique and beautiful friend. Filled with joy and love, the beautiful quilts she made for friends and family will be cherished heirlooms for years to come. She will be deeply missed. I extend my deepest sympathy and condolences to the Kelmachter family, to her extended family, and friends and colleagues. May the beautiful memories of Andy be with you always.

  6. Deborah Terrill said,

    03.26.11 at 12:49 pm

    I had the pleasure of calling Andy my friend for many years. Some times we had more contact than others but we stayed friends through the years. I have many things that I cherish that she has made for me in the years I was putting Michael on the bus in the morning. We shared many walks together and visits to a few quilting places. We shared many a cup of coffee and tea. I will miss her.