James W. Hurley

James W. Hurley

ALTAMONT — James W. Hurley, a World War II veteran with a gentle spirit, died on Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, at St. Peter’s Hospital, after a brief illness. He was 91.

Mr. Hurley was born in Willimantic, Conn., the son of the late William T. and Helen (née McCurdie) Hurley.

He served in World War II, in the United States Army, 393rd Special Services Engineer Regiment. His company worked in the Port of London, England, on the artificial harbors, or mulberries, that were floated over to Normandy after the battle there was won. They later helped to re-build France’s buildings, roads, and bridges.

After the war, Mr. Hurley earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of Connecticut.

His career was spent as a bank examiner, first for the state of Connecticut, and then for New York State. He lived in Altamont for 55 years where he and his wife of 57 years, Wanda K. Hurley, raised their family.

He was a founding member of the Great Northeastern Railroad Foundation, which helped to rescue one of the last steam engines built at the General Electric plant in Schenectady.

He loved to read, especially the newspaper, do household handyman projects, and to collect tools of all kinds, especially from his favorite supplier, R. B. Wing & Son.

“Jim will be remembered for his gentle, loving spirit,” wrote his family in a tribute.

Mr. Hurley is survived by his daughters, Elizabeth Hurley, of Altamont, and Valerie Hurley, and her husband, Michael Kilian, of Harvard, Mass.; his grandchildren, Helen, Peter, and Thomas Kilian, of Harvard, Mass.; his sister-in-law, Carol Hurley, of Willimantic, Conn.; his niece, Kerry DeJesus, of Connecticut; and his nephews, Tom, Tim, and John Hurley, all of Connecticut.

His wife, Wanda K. Hurley, died before him, as did his daughter, Janet Hurley.

Calling hours will be held on Saturday, Feb. 15, at Bacon Funeral Home, 71 Prospect St., Willimantic, Conn., from noon to 2 p.m. Interment will follow at St. Joseph’s Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made toward the maintenance of the World War II monument, at www.wwiimemorial.com.

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