Douglas H. Diamond, 82, of Chelmsford, MA, died peacefully May 7, 2020 at Blaire House of Tewksbury of COVID-19. He was the devoted husband of Elinor for 57 years. In addition to his wife, he is survived by his son, Christopher, and his partner, Lori Krohner, of Westford; his daughter, Kerry, and her husband, James Ravanis, and their children, Nicholas, Lucas, and Rachel, of Pepperell; his son, Douglas Jr., and his fiancée, Rosana de Oliveira Lopes, of Chelmsford; and his younger brother, Peter, his wife, Sarah, and their two children, Hannah and Jonathan, of New York.
Douglas was born in January 1938 in New York City to Hugh and Jeanette Diamond (née Wilforth). He grew up in Flushing, Queens, graduated from Fordham Preparatory High School, and earned a B.S. in Electrical Engineering at Manhattan College (MC) in 1958, before attending graduate school at U.N.H. for his M.S. in Engineering. There the modest scholar encountered the vivacious undergrad, Ellie Callahan, who became his partner in life.
Doug joined the Air Force ROTC in college and received his officer commission when he graduated from MC. He was then selected for the Air Force Institute of Technology graduate studies program which he completed at UNH. He served for nine years in Savannah, Texas, and Northern Ontario. He finally settled in Chelmsford and continued to serve honorably at Hanscom A.F.B. for 30 years as Lieutenant Colonel.
After leaving full time active duty in the Air Force, Doug worked for TRW. Later he spent the majority of his career with Analytical Systems Engineering Corp. (ASEC) where he was involved with the development of AWACS and JSTARS surveillance system projects which remain essential Air Force technologies.
He was active in the Billerica Knights of Columbus for many years. He also ran spotlight and sound for many events at Hampton Beach Casino, Manchester Auditorium, and Capitol Theater of Concord, NH. One of his favorite events was running spotlight for the annual Professional Baseball dinner at the Manchester Armory as it was almost guaranteed to be scheduled during a strong Nor’easter.
Doug was not just an officer, but a true gentleman. A profoundly kind and gentle soul with an air of quiet authority, he was a man of abiding faith and boundless love. He was an ardent father. A dedicated hockey dad, for years he shuttled his boys to rinks and served as Treasurer of the Chelmsford Hockey Association. Later, he doted on his grandchildren to whom he was their beloved, “Boppa.”
He was a natural teacher who was as happy tutoring neighborhood children in arithmetic as he was instructing Northeastern University students as Adjunct Professor of Mathematics. An avid sailor and motor boater he savored weekends on his boat at Lake Winnipesaukee with his wife, children, and grandchildren on board. He was active in the U.S. Power Squadron there and enjoyed educating new members on the finer points of boating. Annual family vacations in Aruba were another tradition Doug cherished.
Long, lean, and laconic, Doug’s subtle wit, quick smile and unassuming manner put people at ease. He loved dogs, cats, and children, and they were likewise drawn to him. He was kindness incarnate and never hesitated to help anyone in need. A wise man, he knew how to appreciate life’s sweet and simple pleasures--and never turned down dessert!
In his final years, even as Doug battled dementia, he never lost his mental calmness and evenness of temper, especially in a difficult situation. His gentle, sunny disposition and capacity to persevere remain an inspiration to those who will love him forever.
His family will announce services at a future date, after the COVID-19 crisis has subsided.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate a donation to the Alzheimer’s Association.