Laurel Kanner Gutterman was born in Brooklyn, New York the older child of Rubell (Gevitz) and Herbert Lee Kanner. She graduated from James Madison High School in Brooklyn and seeking a new environment enrolled in the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa, married Morris B. Gutterman (who predeceased her in 1987) and moved to his home city of Norfolk, Virginia.
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She became active in the education field. With a grant from the Ford Foundation, she originated and taught Spanish on television to fourth and fifth graders. After receiving a Masters in American History, she taught American Studies ( an American literature/history) course to eleventh graders. She became chair of the history department at Lake Taylor High School and left there to become an administrator/ supervisor with the Norfolk Public Schools. She completed all the course work for a doctorate at Virginia Polytechnic Institute.
After retirement, she moved to Ann Arbor Michigan and was able to enjoy the rich cultural and educational life of a university community. Three years ago, she moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
She is survived by two daughters Jo (Robert Levy) and Nan (William Irby) and two granddaughters Zoe Gutterman (Marc Friend) and Noa Gutterman. Her brother, Merritt Kanner, predeceased her.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory may be made to Planned Parenthood or a charity of your choice.