Walter Ellsworth Corey, III


FORESIDE – Walter Ellsworth Corey, III, 79, of Mary Lane, passed away peacefully at Central Maine Medical Center on the morning of Oct. 31, 2020 surrounded by his wife and daughters.

He was the first son of Walter E. Corey Jr., and Theresa Stallone and was born in White Plains, N.Y. on June 19, 1941. Walter attended Regis High School, Princeton University, and Yale Law School, from which he graduated in 1966.

He came to Portland, Maine with his wife, Mary Patricia Donahue, where he joined the Governor’s Staff in 1967 as Federal Coordinator. In 1972, Governor Ken Curtis appointed him as Chairman of the Maine Labor Relations Board. Soon after, the Governor appointed Walter as Chair of the Maine Humanities Council. He served under Governors Longley, King, Brennan, and LePage. In 1975, Walter helped to grow a solid law firm, originally named Curtis, Corey and Lipez. Although a lifelong democrat, Walter enjoyed his political independence and felt strongly that his loyalty ran directly to the people of Maine.

Walter maintained close relationships with his three daughters, Heather Corey of South Portland, Mimi Corey Maslan and her husband Carter of Burlingame, Calif., and Sarah Corey of Los Angeles, Calif. “Pop” was loved dearly by his seven grandchildren, Colin Maslan. Zachary Breed, Annie Maslan, Nick Breed, Eli Breed, Kate Breed, and Aiden Corey Trumbo.

Walter married the love of his life, Julie Lynn Houde, in 2004. With Peter, his younger brother, Walter and Julie divided the year between Yarmouth, Maine and Sarasota, Fla., eventually settling at Higgins Beach in Scarborough. Anyone who saw Walter and Julie walking their three beloved Maltese pups along the beach could easily see the joy and happiness Walter found at Higgins. The ocean always brought Walter tremendous peace. A lifelong swimmer, Walter became a staple at the PCC and YMCA pools swimming laps with his snorkel and mask.

In 2013, Walter lost his beloved brother, Peter, suddenly and unexpectedly. Walter took this devastating experience and grew in compassion and commitment to advocating for the disabled. Growing up with a younger brother who struggled with disabilities taught Walter to not only appreciate but also advocate for various minority groups, including the disabled population.

An avid sports fan, Pop shared decades of season tickets for the Maine Mariners, the Portland Pirates, and the Sea Dogs with his daughters, son-in-laws, and grandchildren.

In reviewing the vast scope of his work, one central theme emerges – the importance he placed on serving others. In the latter part of his career, Walter continued his work on behalf of young adults focusing on teaching and developing leadership skills. From 2007 onward, through Synergethics, Inc., Walter devised and continuously improved an electronic application for the measurement of emotional intelligence, called the Leadership Enhancement Training Tool (LETT). It has been in wide and consistent use for enhancing outcomes for young adults primarily in Maine, as well as throughout New England. It has become the gold standard for such measurement.

Walter was a wonderful man, rich in history, ideas, and energy. He never knew or embraced the word impossible. For him, all things were possible, if only you expanded your thinking. At his core, Walter was creative, kind, and poetic. His life was grounded in his Christian faith. There can be no doubt, Walter fulfilled his mission here to love and serve. We will all miss Pop’s humor, compassion, and inquisitive spirit.

We will be celebrating Walter’s life via zoom on Dec. 6, at 11 a.m. PST, 2 p.m. EST. If you would like to be included in this zoom, please contact Sarah at Arrangements are under the direction of the Conroy-Tully Walker Funeral Home. To view Walter’s memorial page, or to share an online condolence, please visit

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Walter’s honor to the non-profit he created and held dear to his heart:

The Maine

Leadership Institute

P.O. Box 1402

Yarmouth, ME 04096

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