Norman Goldstein: Memorial tribute to a 90-Miler veteran

Norm at the finish of his 90-mile canoe race, September 2014

Norm at the finish of his 90-mile canoe race, September 2014

Norman Harold Goldstein—veterinarian, outdoorsman, father, grandfather, brother, husband and optimist—passed away at the home he shared with his wife, Georgia Stormes, overlooking Otisco Lake on June 13, 2015. He was 77 years old.

Born and raised in Syracuse, Norm quickly showed his passion for the wilderness and animals. He climbed Mount Marcy as a boy, beginning a long relationship with the Adirondack waters and woods. 

As a result of that memorable hike in the 1950s he joined the Adirondack Mountain Club and has remained a member ever since.

Many of Norm’s dear friends first met him at the start of a canoe race where his enthusiasm was contagious, the sentiment continuing through arduous portages and rough waters, only to culminate in hoots and cheers for all the paddlers at the finish line.

In his five decades as a competitive racer he logged thousands of miles and participated in the Adirondack Canoe Classic from Old Forge to Saranac Lake for most of its 32 years, a grand total of 2,610 miles and 87 days.

Amazingly, he competed in the 90-Miler in 2013 and 2014 as a cancer patient.

“Norm Goldstein was a true friend to the paddling community,” said guide, canoe outfitter, and race organizer Brian McDonnell.

“All who knew him respected him as a competitor and a gentleman. He was a Gold Canoe Club member of the Adirondack Canoe Classic community, having completed the event 29 times. He was honored at the 2013 90-Miler with the Terry Healey Award for the person who best exemplifies the true spirit of the Adirondack Canoe Classic.

Norm lit up a room when he entered it. The world will be a bit darker without him.”

When Tom Warrington and his wife, Betsy Folwell, saw Norm last he was reclining on the front porch.

He was wearing an Adirondack Canoe Classic ball cap, and he beckoned them closer, then pointed to his chest.

Under the blankets he had on a Blue Mountain Marathon canoe race T-shirt that dated back to the 1970s, when they first met Norm.

He said, “I wish I were in the Adirondacks.” And when they left, his parting words were, “Just keep paddling.”

Memorial gifts in Norm’s name may be sent to the Alive! Foundation (

Donations in his memory may also be sent to support pancreatic cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital, New York. To make a gift,please visit

Share Button