Remembering Garry Meyers

Longtime Westport educator Garry Meyers died peacefully at his Stratford home on June 11, surrounded by family. He was 89 years old.

The Bridgeport native was a teacher, a storyteller, and a marriage and family therapist. After graduating from Warren Harding High School in 1948, Garry headed to Dartmouth College. He earned a Phi Beta Kappa key, and graduated magna cum laude in 1952.

After serving in the Korean War, Garry earned a master’s degree in education from the University of Bridgeport on the GI Bill. He taught English at Staples High School for many years, and was a principal of the firm Tape Book, before creating the first public high school special education program for emotionally disturbed adolescents in the state of Connecticut.

Garry Meyers

The gratification Garry experienced as he developed this safe place for “the kids” spurred him to devote his professional life to helping more children and families. He pursued a master’s in marriage and family therapy from Southern Connecticut State University, becoming a licensed MFT in Connecticut and Massachusetts.

Whether in line at the hardware store or traveling to Russia, Garry often made new friends. He had an agile, insatiable mind; an irreverent, irresistible sense of humor, and a genuine interest in everyone he met. His life was a celebration of the people he loved, the places he and Donna visited, and the stories that grew from these experiences.

During their years together, Garry and Donna called many places home, including Westport, Redding Sandy Hook and Stratford; Astoria, New York, and Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts.

In their home on Martha’s Vineyard, Garry and Donna created a haven for family and friends. It was especially cherished by Garry’s 17 grandchildren.

Garry is survived by his wife of 51 years, Donna Rae Hitt Meyers for 51 years; his children Liese Meyers Niedermayer, Jennifer Meyers (Mark), Adam Meyers (Ingrid), Melissa Fable Dempsey, Kimberly Fable, and Chaz Fable (Valeria). Garry was predeceased by his youngest daughter, Rebekah Meyers Aronson. He is also survived by his grandchildren Bryan, Erich, Stephanie, Randi, Jessica, Daniel, Jacqueline, Kristen, Alexandra, Matthew, Teddy, Olivia, David, Kiona, Julie Rae, Julian, and Julia.

A celebration of Garry’s life will be held later.

Memorial contributions in his memory may be made to The Trevor Project or the Center for Spectrum Services. 

16 responses to “Remembering Garry Meyers

  1. Susan Siegelaub Katz

    Check your last paragraph Dan. Hopefully NOT predeceased by all those grandchildren!

  2. Jean Crawford

    Garry was the best thing to happen to my life. With his loving guidance I was able to learn both scholastically and life lessons about myself. I missed him terribly after graduation, but with what he taught me I was able to go on and achieve things beyond my expectations. He was greatly loved, still is, and will be greatly missed.

  3. Marcia Wright

    I had the privilege of working with Gary at SHS. He was a consummate professional who never lost his sense of humor.

  4. Mark Bachmann

    I didn’t know this gentleman, but that’s a wonderful obit and obviously inspired by a life well-lived.

  5. Bill Mitchell

    Dan thanks I remember Gary As do my boys

    Sent from my iPhone

  6. Charles Taylor

    In August of 1958 when we moved to Westport from a small WKY town I came to the first day of school in a white T-shirt jeans white socks and loafers. Mr. Meyers was my home room teacher and gently nudged me toward proper attire! He was my mentor for the next three years, ever encouraging me and we laughed all the way. He realized I had a learning problem dyslexia and encouraged me to learn Ay my pace. He also loved my interpretation of Shakespeare! He had wisdom to my teenage angst. Thank you Mr. Meyers! You live on in my life! God Bless you and Rest You and your family!

  7. Barbara Ravage (aka Bobbie Kelman)

    Garry was an extraordinary man and the best teacher many of us had at Staples. He touched so many lives, opening minds and hearts. I will never forget him. To echo Charlie Taylor: He lives on in my life.

  8. Rebecca (Wilde) Jarit

    Garry Meyers was a truly remarkable person. He left the world a better place due to all the young lives he impacted and improved. I know, he saved mine. I have continued for 36 years to think of him and the principles he taught me almost daily. My condolences to his family who meant everything to him.

  9. Wendy (Kramer) Posner

    As a Staples’60 graduate – just this past Friday, I had a long discussion with a friend who asked me if I ever followed up and read the entire works of an author just because I liked one thing they’d written? I was somewhat taken aback by this question, coming as it did from someone with a splendid education. I laughingly said “Of course I do! Obviously, you never did an Author’s report for Gary Meyers, my 11th grade English teacher”!

    I then launched into a testimonial reflecting the life-long debt I owe to this man. He changed my life, empowering me to rethink in my shaky high school academic record. He taught me that learning was not all about grades. To Mr. Meyers, knowledge was nurture and he certainly knew how to implant a life-long diet of sustenance, especially when it came to Shakespeare!

    The thing that makes me happiest, is that over the years, I was able to share with him how much he mattered to me. We continued to be in touch – His birthday was this past Friday.

    RIP Mr. Meyers – your contributions to individual students, patients and to educational systems are immeasurable. How lucky we are to have embodied his gifts and are able to pass them along.

    Sympathies to his family.

  10. Yes a wonderful teacher. I remember to this day his opening our minds, to think about everything in a deeper way, especially when it came to Shakespeare! As Wendy said we were so lucky to have embodied his gifts

  11. Sharon Lee Nelson Hauser

    He was my savior in terms of not just the English language, but all things verbal. As my 3rd year English teacher (Staples class of ‘63) he opened up a world that I had shut out. I loved the sciences and math, but had hated or misunderstood every English teacher who had come before him. He so opened my mind to writing and poetry and the beauty of the English language that as I prepared for going to medical school I actually graduated from U.C. Berkeley with a degree in English. Bless his soul ~ he gave me life.

  12. Sharon Lee Nelson Hauser

    Yes, it’s me again ~ I just realized that the dear man died on my 75th birthday. Love and best wishes to all who might read my comments, especially any members of the class of ‘63🙋🏼‍♀️❤️

  13. Erich Niedermayer

    To Dan Woog, All Students, Westport Families, Friends, and Faculty of Staples High School

    My name is Erich Niedermayer, Grandson of Mr. Garry H.Meyers.

    I’m taking this opportunity to personally thank you from the bottom of not only his beloved wife Donna’s heart, but his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren’s hearts. Your stories have all been enlightening and brought joy, tears, and laughter to us in our time of need. I know my grandfather was an inspiration to all he had come in contact with every single day of his life. His life had so much love, meaning and purpose. So with that being said, i will leave you all not only with a thank you from all of the Meyers-Fable Clan, but a piece of Mr. Meyers that only he could say to each and every person who’s life he had touched best,

    As You Like It (Act 2, Scene 7)

    All the world’s a stage. and all the men and women merely players. They have their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts.

    Love without end,
    The Meyers-Fable Clan.

  14. I told Mr. Meyers I didn’t think I belonged in his AP English class. He said he needed people like me in it. I wasn’t sure what he meant but I stayed. He also didn’t punish me for not doing the Philosophy of Life paper which the school required of all seniors. I said I didn’t have a philosophy of life. I loved him as a teacher and am sorry we didn’t stay in touch. Sounds like he went on from Staples to do great work. Sarah Wunsch ‘65