Daniel L. Gay, 90, died peacefully on August 25, 2022 at Hill House in Bath after a brief illness. Daniel was born August 1, 1932 in West Medway, Massachusetts, the son of Clarence O. Gay and Hilda V. (Rosell) Gay. He graduated from Norfolk Agricultural School and started his working life on dairy farms. He enjoyed working with cattle and was proud of his lifelong relationship with animals.
He met and married Ruth E. Kennerson in 1962 and after starting a family he worked in construction and eventually left that field for a more stable job with Baker Nail Co. in Framingham, Mass. He also landed a Saturday job with State Lumber Co. in Holliston, Mass., which eventually turned into a full-time job with that company in a field he really loved. As a carpenter, a hobby he learned from his father, he always loved a good hardware store. In the evenings, he made picture frames and fulfilled orders from customers who entered the tailoring shop run by his wife.
In 1979, Dan moved with the family to Maine, his wife’s home state, the camping vacation spot the whole family enjoyed every year. He and his wife bought a house in Bath, and he then began 21 years of employment with Bath Iron Works as a pipe worker. After retiring in 2001, he took what was supposed to be a temporary job for his son-in-law at Damariscotta Hardware, but 15 years later finally retired for good at the age of 84. He made many good friends there and was well known for his sense of humor, work ethic and versatility, building tables for the greenhouses, counters in the store and other furniture as needed. .
Dan was passionate about Sunday walks, nature walks, cross country skiing, camping trips, woodworking and his family. He liked nothing better than to load the family into the station wagon and hit the backcountry roads, stopping for nature hikes whenever he found an interesting spot. He loved living in Maine, taking advantage of every season and every opportunity he had to hike in the woods by simply stepping out his front door to access the Bath Trail System. The only thing that could make him more enjoyable was if one of his children or grandchildren were with him to appreciate the beauty of a slipper or a princess pin bowing under a snow lace shawl. A simple man, he was full of love and wonderful memories. He will be deeply missed.
He was predeceased by his wife of 52 years, Ruth E. (Kennerson) Gay; as well as his parents; six brothers; and a sister. He is survived by his children: daughters, Roxann E. Gardiner and her husband, Robert, of Damariscotta, Bonnie L. Ricker and her husband, Darryl, of Woolwich, Julie B. Sager and her husband, Chris, of Raleigh, NC ; and his son, Steven D. Gay, of Bath. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Shaun Curry and his wife, Amanda, Zachary Curry and his wife, Heather, Allyson Sager, Jeremy Ricker, Alexandra Gardiner, Daniel Gardiner and Ryan Gardiner; as well as great-grandchildren, Anniston Curry, Luke Curry and Arthur Curry. He is also survived by one brother, Clarence O. Gay, of Medway, Mass.; and several nieces and nephews.
A celebration of life will be held at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, August 30 at Desmond Funeral Home, 638 High St. in Bath. There will be a private funeral service for the immediate family.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Dan’s name to the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust, PO Box 1128, Bath, ME 04530 to help maintain the trail system Dan loved so much.
To share your thoughts and condolences with the family, please visit desmondfuneralhomes.com.