Peter O'Neill Curtin, 62, a Portland native and life-long resident, died peacefully in his sleep Nov. 2. There was a funeral Mass at Holy Redeemer Church.
Mr. Curtin was born Aug. 1, 1954, to Edmond and Olive Schrantz Curtin. He attended Holy Redeemer Grade School and graduated from Central Catholic High School, where he was a reporter for the school newspaper. After highschool he played junior hockey in Portland and worked for a time as a volunteer at Loaves and Fishes, a food bank in Old Town.
Mr. Curtin was a devout Catholic who attended Mass most days at St. André Bessette (formally known as The Downtown Chapel). His voice boomed the prayers and his singing resounded off the walls. His life was devoted to Jesus and the Eucharist.
Mr. Curtin suffered from schizophrenia his entire adult life, yet was independent and self-sufficient. His illness never kept him from having dozens, if not hundreds of friendships. He was forever greeting people, even complete strangers, with "I love you."
He enjoyed attending Portland Beaver baseball games, Timbers and Thorns soccer matches and an occasional Trailblazer game. He had a memory like a steel trap and could remember a name or a date without hesitation. Having never driven, Mr. Curtin made his way around town with a keen sense of TriMet schedules and miles and miles of walking. He lost the use of his legs almost three years before his death and lived the remainder of his life at a Portland care facility where family, friends, and staff cared for him. In spite of his infirmities, he retained his love of all and a deep devotion to his faith.
The Gospel for Peter's last day of life, All Souls Day, was the Beatitudes, appropriate, said Rev. Steve Newton, former pastor at St. André's, “because Peter was pure in spirit, poor, meek, pure of heart and merciful. We who mourn him are comforted in knowing that he has reached the fullness of life — something he was denied in the world of time and space.”
His parents preceded him in death, as did his sister, Catherine Curtin Olson.
He is survived by his sister, Frances Woolsey of Ridgefield, Washington; brothers, Edmond of Corvallis, Thomas of Portland, Matthew of Chicago, Joseph and John, both of Seattle; nieces, nephews, grandnieces, grandnephews and cousins.
The family thanks the staffs at Laurelhurst Village and Central City Concern for going above and beyond in their care and love for Mr. Curtin.
In lieu of flowers or gifts, the family recommends donations to St. André Bessette Parish, 601 W. Burnside St., Portland, 97209, and that you say, "I love you" to someone every day.