LONG BEACH - David Curtiss Thayer, 74, died July 19, 2004, at the Long Beach Retirement and Assisted Care Center. Born Dec. 6, 1929, in Boston, Mass., he was the son of David I. and Dorothy (Curtiss) Thayer. During his early childhood the family lived in Plantsville, Conn. He was raised on the family flower farm (Curtiss Farms) which has been in existence since the 1700s.
For a short time the family lived in Lake Worth, Fla., where Mr. Thayer began elementary school. Upon his family's return to Connecticut he attended school in Milford in the same one room schoolhouse that his grandfather had attended. His middle school years were at a school in Southington, Conn., and he attended Lewis High School in Southington.
In 1948 he joined the U.S. Navy. He then joined the U.S. Army in 1951 and served in the Signal Corp during the Korean War. After being honorably discharged from military service, he returned home and went to work in the family businesses. He soon joined the electronics industry, a field he continued to work in until his retirement. During his career in electronics he was employed as a product technician, engineering technician and a supervisor. He was involved with both testing and development of numerous electrical discoveries - transmitters and receivers for the Dew Line, meteorological telemetering systems, magnetorestrictive ultrasonic cleaning and degreasing equipment, digital tape storage for the teletype industry, design and evaluation of module circuits, audio and pulse circuits for video and audio classroom systems, calibration and testing of wireless systems. He was employed with Phillips Electronics in Cheshire, Conn., during the development of electric shavers and with Picker International Company of Northford, Conn., during the development of medical imaging systems. He retired as an electrical engineer with VDO Company.
Mr. Thayer was a member of the National Geographic Society and an Associate Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, of which he was very proud. His primary interest was electronics, but he also enjoyed photography and history. In earlier years he loved racing cars and bicycles. He was an accomplished photographer and enjoyed collecting books, especially informational directories, encyclopedia and dictionaries which were his normal reading material.
Mr. Thayer never married but is survived by sisters Carolyn Klingler of Ocean Park and Deborah Oye of Westport, Wash.; a brother Burdette Thayer of Townsend, Mont.; six nephews and numerous cousins in Connecticut and Rhode Island. He will be greatly missed.
A celebration of his life was held Monday, July 26, at the Long Beach Retirement Center. Private cremation has been held. Arrangements by Penttila's Chapel by The Sea, Long Beach.