Wednesday, September 22, 2021


George W. ‘Red’ Zettergren


On June 7, George W. “Red” Zettergren, 88, longtime resident of Guilford and formerly of East Haven and Wallingford, passed away peacefully at his home. He was the beloved husband of Annette Abato Zettergren for 65 years. George was born in New Haven on Feb. 22, 1933. He was the son of the late Fritz W. Zettergren and Charlotte Forselius Zettergren. He was predeceased by a brother, William Zettergren, and a sister, Ellen Zettergren Darby.

George was a member of The Wilbur Cross High School Class of 1951. He was a member of both the football and track teams. He attended The University of Connecticut where he was a member of the Delta Chi fraternity and the ROTC. After graduation in 1955, George served as a navigator in the United States Air Force and was honorably discharged as a captain after three years.

After discharge from the Air Force, George worked for two years at Armstrong Industrial Engineering before joining the Travelers Insurance Company where he worked for more than 30 years until his retirement in 1991 as a vice president in the Life, Health, and Financial Services Department. Later in his career he earned a master’s degree from Columbia University and a graduate degree from the University of New Haven.

George was active with The Boy Scouts of America since he was a young boy and eventually earned his Eagle Scout Badge. As an adult, he served as a Boy Scout leader and generously volunteered his time during many summers at Deer Lake Boy Scout Camp in Killingworth. He sang as a baritone with the Silver City Chorus Barbershop group out of Meriden, for many years. He also volunteered as a coach for the Wallingford Junior Football League.

After retirement, George and Annette moved from Wallingford to East Haven where George enjoyed boating, fishing, and lobstering. They built a family home in Vermont where they vacationed and spent countless weekends skiing, fishing, golfing, hiking, and relaxing with family. George and Annette also enjoyed many ski trips overseas to Europe as well as sightseeing trips to the British Isles, Scandinavia, and Australia.

In addition to his loving wife Annette, George is survived by his children Robert Zettergren (Cindy Gibbons) of Thompson, Richard (Diane) Zettergren of Meriden, Debbie (Rob) Quilty of Burlington, William Zettergren (Carla Apura) of Milford, and Karen (Ian) Shea of Killingworth. He is also survived by nine grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren, and several nieces and nephews.

Friends and family called June 14 at the Guilford Funeral Home. A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated on June 15 in St. George Church, Guilford, followed by burial in All Saints Cemetery, North Haven. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Save the Sound, 900 Chapel St., Suite 2202, New Haven, CT, 06510 or by visiting its website, To share a memory or leave condolences, visit

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