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Guido Goldman, a U.S. Bridge to Germany, Dies at 83

Three years later, his father decided to move the family to America, where at some point in the bureaucratic shuffle of immigration, the second “n” in Mr. Goldman’s name fell off, and he never bothered to replace it. He attended the Birch Wathen School, now the Birch Wathen Lenox School, on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, before enrolling at Harvard.

Mr. Goldman never married. He is survived by his brother, who lives in Los Angeles.

In Manhattan, Mr. Goldman’s father, who was also the president of the World Zionist Organization, proved critical in winning support for Israeli independence in the United Nations. He instilled in his sons a commitment to social justice, which led Mr. Goldman to underwrite civil rights activism in the 1960s and ’70s.

But Mr. Goldman’s friends said his parents could be cold and distant toward him — one reason, they said, that he sought out Mr. Kissinger to be his mentor at Harvard, where Mr. Goldman graduated summa cum laude with a degree in government in 1959 and earned a doctorate in the same field a decade later. Their bond went far beyond that of a professor and a star pupil; Mr. Kissinger himself described it as a “father-son relationship.”

A liberal Democrat, Mr. Goldman did not follow Mr. Kissinger into the Nixon White House. But he remained Mr. Kissinger’s confidant, reporting back to him after his frequent trips to West Germany to meet with leading politicians there. He helped Mr. Kissinger in other ways too: He let him stay in his apartment when Mr. Kissinger was in New York, bodyguards in tow, and he even lent him two pieces of art to hang in his office at the White House.

“It was a typically Guido thing to do,” Mr. Kissinger said in a phone interview on Monday. “Something I didn’t ask for, something I didn’t know I needed.”

Already rich from his mother’s inheritance, Mr. Goldman amassed even more wealth during the 1970s and ’80s as a real-estate investor and private money manager — money that he gladly, and often anonymously, dispensed among his friends and people he admired, including civil rights activists like Mr. Belafonte and Marian Wright Edelman, the founder of the Children’s Defense Fund.

“He was one of the most generous connectors of friends and institution creators I’ve ever encountered,” Ms. Edelman said.

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