David Preston Obituary

David Preston
November 17, 1933 – March 26, 2024
David Preston, age 90, of Essex, Connecticut, died peacefully in Essex on March 26th, 2024. Dave was born on November 17, 1933, in Boston, Massachusetts, a son of Roger and Anita Preston of Waban, Massachusetts. He was predeceased by his brothers, Peter, Fred, and Phil.
Dave is survived by his beloved wife of sixty years, Barbara Biddulph Preston, his son, Christopher Preston, his daughter Elizabeth Preston Miramon, and their spouses Elizabeth Valalik and Peter Miramon, and three grandchildren Carly and Emily Preston and Benjamin Miramon.
Also surviving Dave are his brothers- and sisters-in-law, Carl and Susan Biddulph, Hannah and Larry Crutcher, and Granthia Preston, as well as five nieces and nephews.
Dave attended the Rivers School, graduated from Deerfield Academy in 1951, and Cornell University in 1955 where he was a member of the Sigma Phi Society. He earned a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University in 1963.
Dave began his business career in the paper industry as a “peddler” with S.D. Warren in Maine and the H. M. Gousha Company in New York. In 1975 he purchased Scott & Daniells Inc., a manufacturer of folding cartons in Portland, Connecticut. He acquired Custom Carton in Branford, Connecticut in 1992 and set up a new manufacturing facility in Gastonia, North Carolina in 1996. Dave sold the business to Pharmagraphics in 1999 and retired in 2002.
Dave called Squam Lake in Holderness, New Hampshire, his home. He spent nearly 90 summers on the lake listening to the loons, enjoying lake activities, and hiking in the White Mountains. As a teenager, he spent the summer of 1954 working as a “hutman” for the Appalachian Mountain Club at Madison Springs Hut. 
His enjoyment of skiing matched his love of hiking. He was a member of the Professional Ski Instructors of America. Dave enjoyed finding fresh powder and yodeling as he carved turns down mountains in New England, the West, and Europe. His adventurous spirit took him and Barbara to many continents, exploring on foot or bike, hiking over passes, and overnighting in refugios.
Dave’s volunteer interests were primarily in education and land conservation in the communities where he worked and lived. He served on the boards of the Connecticut Nature Conservancy, Cooper Instrument Corporation, Middlesex Hospital, Middlesex Chamber of Commerce, Middlesex County Community Foundation, Old Lyme Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library, and Service Corps of Retired Executives. In 2003 Dave received the Middlesex County Distinguished Service Award from the Middlesex Chamber of Commerce.
He served as a Board Trustee for Deerfield Academy and the Williams School in New London, Connecticut. Dave was an Overseer at Colby College and Chaired the college’s Parents Association. He was a member of the Old Lyme Beach Club, Old Lyme Country Club, and the Essex Yacht Club.
The family thanks the Essex Meadows Health Center staff for the wonderful care they gave Dave.
The date for the memorial service, a celebration of Dave’s life, will be forthcoming. Instead of flowers, please consider a memorial gift in Dave’s name to the Essex Meadows Employee Appreciation Fund or the Squam Lakes Conservation Society.

Published by Middletown Press on Apr. 15, 2024.

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