Artists Judith and Gerson Leiber Die Within Hours of Each Other: 'That's Love'
They died in their home.
Famous handbag designer Judith Leiber and her husband, abstract painter Gerson Leiber, died within hours of one another.
The Leibers, who met just after World War II, were buried together Monday. The couple had been married for 72 years.
Judith, 97, died in her home Saturday in Springs, N.Y., after being in hospice care for a few weeks. Gerson, 96, had also reportedly had been hospitalized this past Friday and when he came home and saw Judith, he said, "Sweetie, it’s time for us to go," Jeffrey Sussman, their spokesman, told The New York Times.
He died just hours before her in the home. Both had suffered heart attacks, Sussman said.
“As sad as I am, I am so happy that they left this earth together,” Ann Fristoe Stewart, the manager of the Leiber Collection, told InsideEdition.com. "That’s love!"
In recent years, the couple had mounted joint exhibitions of their work on Long Island and in Manhattan, The Times reported.
Judith was born Marianne Peta, in Budapest, Hungary, and began making handbags as a young woman.
She and her family, who were Jewish, avoided being sent to concentration camps by sewing Army uniforms, the paper reported.
Gerson was stationed in Europe as an American soldier, where they met. After they married in 1946, they settled in Brooklyn, where Gerson had been born.
Judith’s handbag empire began in 1963 after she had already worked for other companies. She reportedly sold her company in 1993, designing for another five years before retiring at 77.
Gerson was known for his prints of New York scenery and his work was shown in numerous museums, including New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Brooklyn Museum.
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