York, Maine-David N. Ott, 83, sadly on Sunday, May 31st, 2020 we lost a wonderful human being.He died peacefully at home with his children and wife by his side. It is hard to sum up who he was because he was so much to so many but in the words of his granddaughter, “ he turned everything ordinary into the extraordinary.” The rules of life were simple for David, guided by kindness, generosity, joy for life and love for family, friends and community. His impact was profound.
David Ott was the only child of Henry and Margaret born April 29,1937 in Titusville, Pennsylvania - home of the very first oil well as he liked to exclaim. He was raised in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania and often reminisced about his happy childhood. He was an all American boy who had a paper route, loved playing ball, fishing in a stream, cherry pie and his faithful dog Pal.
He graduated from West View High in 1955 and was voted “most likeable and easy going guy”. He went on to graduate from Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania in 1959. While at Bucknell he belonged to the fraternity PHI GAMMA DELTA where he was known as “Otter” and made many lifelong friends. Having been in the ROTC program, David was commissioned a second lieutenant in the US Army where he served on active duty as a platoon leader and company commander in the 33rd Medium Tank Battalion, stationed at Fort Knox ,Kentucky.
In 1960 David married his college sweetheart and went on to have two children, Whitney and David. He and his family moved to Carlise, PA where he attended Dickinson School of Law. David graduated in 1969 with a Juris Doctor Degree and moved to Maine to settle down and practice law .He was admitted to the Maine Bar in 1970 and in 1971 hung his hand painted shingle in front of his home in York, Maine as a sole practitioner. In 1993 he went on to establish the law office of Erwin,Ott, Clark & Campbell and continued to practice law up until his passing. David served on countless boards and was active in community affairs, but the one closest to his heart ( mainly for the home baked cookies) was serving as the town moderator, a position he held for over forty years. David also served his community and state by serving five terms as a Maine Legislator in the House of Representatives serving on the Judiciary Committee and the Appropriations and the Financial Affairs Committee. David loved serving his community and state but even more, he enjoyed the relationships he made along the way.
David loved golf and there was nobody he would rather play with than his son. He loved biking, hiking ,kayaking, sailing and spending time outdoors. He was an avid reader, always wanting to learn something new everyday and to share his knowledge. He was an adventurer who was always ready to travel. David loved spending time on the water. Those who knew him agreed that he was happiest when out on a boat.”Believe me” he would say quoting Kenneth Grahame “There is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.
Although his roots were in Pennsylvania his heart belonged to Maine. David was a man who wore many hats…. quite literally.One of his favorites that he wore was that of Moose Master (a title that he informally donned himself) of the “Moose Lodge”, where any gathering was an opportunity for a ceremony, song, or new tradition. A favorite was initiating new members into the Order of the Moose, a long standing family tradition introducing out-of -staters to the way life should be. David was an entertainer, doing everything he did with passion and preferably in costume.
In 1977 David lost his wife Jane and he took on the role of being a single father which was not an easy job, but one he took on wholeheartedly. He taught his children Whitney and David to always remember who they are and where they came from. As a immensely proud grandfather to Daisy, Hayden, Ethan and Mallory, he encouraged them to always follow their dreams. He was their biggest cheerleader never missing an opportunity to support them in any endeavor. In 2000 he was lucky enough to meet Eileen Bonfield and find love again. As a couple, David and Eilleen shared many adventures in their numerous travels from roaming the irish countryside to ziplining in Belize and hiking volcanoes in Iceland.Their motto was to “keep making memories” even if it was just a simple trip to the hardware store. They knew how to have fun together!
David was a force for good, kid at heart and one of a kind. He had the amazing ability to light up the lives of others and to quote Winnie the Pooh we say, “how lucky to have had somebody that makes saying goodbye so hard.”
David's memory will be cherished by his loving wife Eileen to whom David was her best friend - her Everything. He is remembered by his two children Whitney and David Ott for his unwavering love and support and count themselves so very fortunate to have had him for a father. His grandchildren Daisy ,Mallory, Hayden and Ethan counted themselves lucky to have “the coolest grandpa ever”. Also initiated into the family by marriage and order of the Moose are son in law Brian Aromando, Eileen's sons Colin Bonfield and his wife Shahrzad, Ryan Bonfield and fiance Nicole who will all miss him dearly.
A Celebration of Life will be held Sunday, October 17th from 1 to 4pm at the York Golf & Tennis Club, 62 Organug Road, York, Maine. For the health and well being of everyone we appreciate you being vaccinated.
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