NEW GLOUCESTER – When David Wing’s family called him “the starter and alternator genius,” they were not joking.

As owner and operator of D&D Starter Company, Inc., Mr. Wing repaired a lot of cars in his day. Once, when he received a phone call from a woman stranded in a parking lot, Mr. Wing packed a toolbox and went to see what he could do.

“He took the starter out in the parking lot and rebuilt it on the sidewalk with his bare hands and tools. Then he put it back in and told this woman to give it a shot,” his son Todd Wing said. The car started right up.

Mr. Wing died Tuesday of heart failure. He was 65.

Mr. Wing was a Little League coach for more than 10 years, earning the nickname “Coach” teaching baseball to his sons and other New Gloucester youths.

His influence was reflected in a note from a former Little League player.

“You were a big part in shaping my life as a child,” Todd Wing read. “You inspired all of us on the team.”

During the past 10 years, Mr. Wing ran his business and enjoyed time with Marilyn. The couple connected after Mr. Wing’s first wife died.

“I knew who he was,” she said, because her daughters had gone to school with Mr. Wing’s sons. “He called me up one night and we talked forever and ever. And here we are.”

Mr. Wing enjoyed hunting and fishing, and took many trips to the Moosehead Lake region. While he fished, his wife picked flowers or hunted for rocks for their gardens back home. Sometimes they would just drive down the Golden Road, a long, well-known dirt logging route.

“It’s just in the middle of nowhere. You can travel for miles and miles and see for miles and miles,” she said, encountering a lot of wildlife along the way.

When the couple married, she said, Mr. Wing took care of her daughters as if they were his own. He also enjoyed spending time with his 15 grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Rob Wing shared his father’s passion for fishing and hunting. He remembers the first time the two went ice fishing together.

“We bought this portable pop-up tent. We popped it up and didn’t anchor it down,” he said, recalling how one gust of wind sent them flying across the ice.

“It was a little embarrassing, but it was our first time out there,” Rob Wing said.

Over the past few years, with a growing family of his own, Rob Wing admits he did not spend as much time with his father as he would have liked.

During Mr. Wing’s stay in the hospital, his son told him, “I was trying to be a good husband and a good father, but along the way, I forgot how to be a son.” His father understood.

Todd Wing cared for their father while he was hospitalized, Rob Wing said.

“I don’t think Todd missed a day of him in the hospital,” Rob Wing said.

 

Staff Writer Emma Bouthillette can be contacted at 791-6325 or at:

[email protected]