Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice



Charlotte Ettinger Rotenberg

Charlotte Ettinger Getz Rotenberg, of Longwood, passed away on Friday, May 10, 2013 at her residence. She was 89 years old.

Mrs. Rotenberg was born on Jan. 11, 1924 in Miami Beach, the youngest of five children: Bea, Mimi, Martha and Leon Ettinger. Growing up she spent time between Miami and Toledo, Ohio. A graduate of Frances Shimer Junior College in Mount Carroll, Ill., she went on to become a student at the University of Michigan. She married Donald Getz in 1943 and headed to California where her first daughter Audrey Getz Lentz, of Winter Park, was born. After WWII, they moved to New York where her daughter Janis Getz Bear, of New York, was born.

Mrs. Rotenberg spent time teaching English at a local high school and as a Red Cross nurse at St. Vincent Hospital.

Her volunteerism began early with the children as a Girl Scout cookie mother and class parent. In New York, she was part of the National Council of Jewish Women—where she greeted guests at the airports to take them to Hyde Park to meet Eleanor Roosevelt.

After her divorce in 1963, she moved to Palomar in Orlando to be near her brother and his wife, Leon and Bea Ettinger. She later moved to Miami before returning to Winter Park in 1989.

In Miami, Mrs. Rotenberg became involved with the Jewish Federation chairing the Miami Condominiums division. She was an activist with the Civil Rights movement. While in Orlando, she walked the Parramore neighborhood to sign up voters with Mabel Butler.

In 1969, she married her late husband, the artist Harold Rotenberg who, died at age 105, two years ago. With Harold she traveled the world for him to paint. They spent many years between New York City and Safed, Israel. While in Israel, she met Golda Meir. Harold was the only foreign member of the Israeli Artist Association who has a painting displayed in the Knesset. They sold their house in Safed to spend more time in Jerusalem, where they were invited to Mishkenot Sha’ananim twice; this was founded by Isaac Stern and Mayor Teddy Kolek of Jerusalem. They invited artists, poets, sculptors, and musicians from all over the world of any religion. This was housed outside the Old City.

In Central Florida, Mrs. Rotenberg played an important part in the support of the Jewish community. She was chosen as the second Woman of Choice receipient, which she considered one of the best days of her life. For her 80th birthday, she sent an ambulance to Safed, Israel, to honor her parents. She was a supporter of many local charities and a sponsor of the Headdress Ball. In early 2013, she was honored as one of the “8 Over 80” at a special dinner celebrating her lifelong service of activism, altruism, philanthropy and leadership.

In addition to her two daughters, Charlotte is survived by three stepchildren, four grandchildren, five step-grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. She moved to Village on the Green after selling her home in Winter Park.

Recently she said “I was a smoker for many years, quitting over 29 years ago. I am currently on oxygen. My words of wisdom: donate time and money to causes and organizations you believe in. Don’t smoke and wear sun screen.”

Funeral services were held at the Temple Israel Pavilion on May 13 with Rabbi David Kay of Congregation Ohev Shalom officiating. In memory of Charlotte Ettinger Getz Rotenberg, the family requests donations to American Friends of Magen David Adom, 2420 Beman Court, Winter Park, FL 32789, or farzin@cfl.rr.com.

Funeral arrangements entrusted to Beth Shalom Memorial Chapel, Orlando.


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