Garrett Elliott “Connie” Conover Jr., 81, died at home Saturday, Oct. 16, 2010 after a period of failing health. Connie was born Sept. 30, 1929, in Orange, N.J. He attended college at the University of Vermont where he played football and earned a degree in geology in 1952. He then served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy for four years. He married Dianne “Deedee” Rice of Portland in 1959. The two met on the ski slopes of Stowe, Vt.

Together, they raised four children in Shelburne, Mass. Connie owned and operated his own fuel oil company, Franklin Ware Fuel, in Shelburne Falls. He was an active member of Kiwanis for 35 years and the Berkshire East Ski Club. In 1973, Connie, with his family, started spending summers in Camden. They have been the Curtis Island lighthouse caretakers since 1980. Having a desire to remain active and give back to the Midcoast community, both Connie and Deedee took great care in keeping the island clean and safe for visitors and passing mariners. Connie stayed committed to his duties as lighthouse keeper for 30 years.

In the years between 1986 and 1995, Connie achieved two of his life-long goals — to sail across the Atlantic Ocean and explore Europe’s shoreline with his family and to spend two winters out west skiing the big mountains of Jackson Hole, Wyo., and Telluride, Colo. He later enjoyed spending the winter months at Sugarloaf, where he often was on the coveted “first chair of the day.” Connie treasured spending time outdoors, living a healthy lifestyle in the fresh air.

Connie was a member of the Camden Yacht Club, Cruising Club of America and the Ocean Cruising Club. He will be fondly remembered by all who knew him for his positive attitude, adventurous spirit and devotion to family.

Surviving are his wife, Deedee; their four children, Sue; Jen; David and his wife, Beverly; and Pete and his wife, Andrea; their nine grandchildren, Emma, Will, Lydia, Simon, Cedar, Ethan, Elli, Charlie, and Olive; and his sister, Midge Ehrenfreund and her three daughters.

A memorial service will be held on Sunday, Oct. 24, at 1:30 p.m. at 8 Dillingham Point in Camden. A reception will follow at the Camden Snow Bowl.

Donations can be made to the Ragged Mountain Recreation Area Foundation (Snow Bowl Re-Development Project) P.O. Box 438, Camden, ME 04843.