NEWTOWN - Thomas Goosman, a son of Russian immigrants who began working on his parents' Newtown dairy farm when he was 9 and spent a lifetime contributing his time and money to the community, died Sunday. He was 89. Newtown Town Clerk Cynthia Simon , a lifelong friend and member of the Republican Town Committee , described Goosman as "a great guy." "He just gave and gave and never took back," Simon said Monday. "You couldn't find a nicer family. They don't make them like that any more." As an active, lifetime member of the GOP committee , Goosman served several terms on the town's Board of Selectmen , the Legislative Council and other boards and commissions. Former Democratic First Selectman Jack Rosenthal remembered Goosman's tenure as a selectman. "He always put the town first," Rosenthal said. Goosman's involvement in Newtown affairs was diverse. For 40 years Goosman supported the Newtown Ambulance Corps as an EMT and ambulance driver. In 1949, Goosman and his wife, Lilly, along with some neighbors, mortgaged their homes to raise money to build a firehouse for the United Fire Company in Botsford. Goosman was a founding member of the fire company and its representative on the Newtown Board of Fire Commissioners . At one time he was a member of the Lake Candlewood State Police patrol and for 20 years served Newtown Housing for the Elderly. Goosman was born in 1915, two years after his parents, Jacob and Sophie, settled in Newtown as one of the first families to develop a Jewish agricultural community in the Huntingtown Road area. It was a challenging start to his life. In 1917, when his father bought a 40-acre dairy farm in Newtown, there was no electricity in the neighborhood so Goosman's family had to use candles and kerosene lamps. "I remember working on the farm as a boy of 9 and going to a local one-room schoolhouse where there was one teacher who taught eight classes a day to 28 children," Goosman said in an interview with The News-Times in 1999. Goosman graduated from Newtown High School in 1937 and in 1940 married Lilly Hansen Contact Brian Saxton at email@example.com or at (203) 731-3332.