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Charles "Charlie" Duryea

January 10, 1934 ~ March 18, 2024 (age 90) 90 Years Old

Charles Duryea Obituary

Though his parents named him Charles Rulef Duryea, III, he was anything but formal, preferring his nicknames; Charlie, Chuck, and of course, “Uncle Chas.”  Born on January 10th, 1934 to Kat and Ruley, his namesake, he spent his youth in Amityville, New York, swimming in the Great South Bay, playing with neighborhood buddies, and nurturing a passion for baseball; specifically the Brooklyn Dodgers.  He attended LaSalle Military Academy in Oakdale during high school, followed by college at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana, where he majored in pre-med but specialized in shimmying up drain pipes after curfew to avoid the Holy Cross fathers on night watch.  Shortly after graduating with honors from Notre Dame, he served as a medic in the United States Army from 1956 - 1958 at Fort Polk, Louisiana and Fort Dix, New Jersey.  

Much to his dismay, the Dodgers left New York in 1958, but Charlie was distracted by a new passion; he was set up on a blind date with Faith Ritchie, and although she initially brushed him off, claiming she wasn’t interested, he persisted and won her over; they were married on September 6th, 1958.  Shortly thereafter followed a train of children, first Hope in July 1959, Stephen in August 1960, Gail in March 1962, Marie in December 1963, David in November 1964, and finally the caboose; Elizabeth (Betsy) in January 1975.  Thank goodness the New York Mets were established in 1962 so he had something to watch while he was burping babies, and thus began a life of frustration cheering for those lovable losers.  LET’S GO, METS!

He began his career as a manufacturer’s representative in plumbing supplies sales in Rockville Center but really flourished when he and Faith bought into a franchise, Annie’s Book Swap, and opened their first used bookstore in 1982 in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.  Many more stores followed, and eventually they broke away from the franchise and went independent, dubbing their venture “Book Stop.”  They successfully managed stores in Hudson, Kingston, Schenectady, and Rotterdam, New York at various times through the years, eventually selling the last store to Betsy and her husband, Joe, and retiring in 2002.

While babies and baseball certainly distracted him in his earlier years, his grandchildren and great grandchildren kept him laughing later, from the first batch, Ryan, Sarah, and Katherine (Hope and Gordon), to the second wave, Celia and Tess (David and Barbara), Alexandra and Patrick (Stephen and Benedicte), Caroline and Mark (Marie and John), Daniel and Kevin (Gail and Bob), and finally, the third tier, James and Joseph (Betsy and Joe), Patrick (David and Barbara), and Dave “B” (Hope and Dave).  Not to be outdone, the first batch started hatching their own nests, and he and Faith became great-grandparents with Natalie and Ryan (Ryan and Melissa), Gavin and Sabina (Sarah and Nick), and Charlie (Katherine and Isaac), and Theodore (Celia).  It’s no wonder that our family gatherings are so busy and loud!  

Charlie loved reading and sharing books, swimming in the ocean, good char on his grilling, drinking cold beer, raucous costume parties with odd-ball themes, dancing with his sister, Ann, cheering for and jeering at the New York Mets, watching classic movies, and of course his family, especially his wife of 65 years, Faith.  We will miss him fiercely but only because he taught us to love each other that way.  

Memorial Visitation- Thursday March 21, 2024 from 3:00 - 7:00 p.m. at our Bayport Funeral Home, 683 Montauk Hwy.

Funeral Mass- Friday March 22, 2024 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Lawrence RC Church, Sayville

​Inurnment- Calverton National Cemetery


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March 21, 2024

3:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Raynor & D'Andrea Funeral Home, Bayport
683 Montauk Highway
Bayport, NY 11705

Funeral Mass
March 22, 2024

10:00 AM
St. Lawrence RC Church
240 W Main Street
Sayville, NY 11782

Video is available for this event


Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research
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