Douglas W. Curtis Sr. ’47
ROCKLAND — Retired U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Douglas W. Curtis Sr., 87, died March 9, 2015, at Windward Gardens in Camden, following a period of declining health.
Born in Rockland on March 17, 1927, he was the son of Ervin L. and Hazel Wellman Curtis. Educated in local schools, he was a 1945 graduate of Rockland High School.
Mr. Curtis went on to graduate from Maine Maritime Academy in 1947 and completed studies in 1950, earning a business degree from Husson Business College.
On June 21, 1953, while home on leave from the U.S. Navy, Mr. Curtis married his high school classmate, Pauline Stevens, at St. Peters Episcopal Church. The couple made their home in Rockland, where they raised their family of three sons and a daughter.
His work experience began in 1943 at Snow’s Shipyard, where he worked during school vacation, assisting in the re-construction of buildings lost in the 1942 fire. He later worked 10 years in his father’s business, Ervin L. Curtis, General Contractor. For 35 years, with his wife Pauline, he co-owned Curtis Food Center, a family grocery store on South Main Street in Rockland, and for more than 30 years, he owned and managed several commercial and residential properties in Rockland.
Having served active duty with the U.S. Navy during the Korean War, he continued as a reservist, serving more than 23 years. He also served 16 years as a Merchant Marine officer, with 13 consecutive months in 1991, during the First Persian Gulf War.
As well as being a devoted husband, father and grandfather, Mr. Curtis has long been active in his community. He was a 50+ year member of the Winslow-Holbrook-Merritt American Legion Post No. 1 in Rockland and in association with that was a member of the Forty and Eight. For six years he served on the Maine School Administrative District 5 School Board and many years as a board member of the Region 8 Midcoast School of Technology. For more than 40 years, he was a member of the Rockland Port District and a life member of the Reserve Officers Association. From 1974 to 1975 he served in the Maine House of Representatives.
In addition to his parents, Mr. Curtis was predeceased by his beloved wife, Pauline in 1999; his sister, Dorothy L. Dowling in 1994; and one aunt, Leola Wellman. He is survived by three sons, Douglas W. Curtis Jr. and his wife, Ferolyn, of Rockland, Gregory S. Curtis of Virginia Beach, Va., and Ervin L. Curtis and his wife, Christine, of South Thomaston; one daughter, Georgia S. Curtis and her partner, Doug Millar, of Brockton, Mass.; nine grandchildren, Matthew P. Curtis and his wife, Rachel, of Anaheim, Calif., Andrea Curtis of Rockland, Michael Curtis and his wife, Lisa, of Owls Head, Diana L. McGraw, Charisse Curtis and Christopher Curtis, all of Virginia Beach, Va., Paul Curtis of Brockton, Mass., Daniel Curtis and his wife Jinhee, and Caroline Curtis, all of South Thomaston; six great-grandchildren, Riley, Wills, Chase, Knox, Caiya and Ceanna; one sister-in-law, Georgia A. Tasho of Brockton, Mass.; a niece, Mary Dowling and her fiancé, William Gifford, of Camden, and Mary’s children, Molly and Jennie Pietroski; and a nephew, James “Jamie” Dowling and his companion, Karen Kelley, of Rockland.
Friends and relatives are invited to visit Monday, March 16 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St. in Rockland. A Eucharistic Celebration will be held Tuesday, March 17 at 11 a.m. at St. Peters Episcopal Church, 11 White St. in Rockland. The Rev. Lael Sorensen will officiate. Spring interment will be in Sea View Cemetery in Rockland.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Peters Episcopal Church, 11 White St., Rockland, ME 04841; Rockland District Nursing Association, P.O. Box 1713, Rockland, ME 04841 or Winslow–Holbrook–Merritt American Legion Post No. 1, P.O. Box 582, Rockland, ME 04841.