VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Virginia Beach resident Myron Curtis has led a diverse life - as a U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer and WWII vet, a public school teacher, and a nationally-renowned architectural woodturner.
Now he can add another title to that list: Centenarian.
On Saturday, friends and fans of Curtis turned up at his eclectic Sandbridge home to help him celebrate turning 100-years-old. Among those participating were the Patriot Guard Riders and members of the Tidewater Turners - a group Myron helped start, and from whom many members learned lessons allowing them to hone their skills.
According to bio information from the Patriot Guard Riders, Myron enlisted in the Navy in the fall of 1939 and served as a crewman on PBY’s conducting submarine patrols over the entire Atlantic coast from Canada to Brazil, looking for subs and picking up survivors of sunken ships.
The last three years he spent in the service before retiring, he became the flight chief on a Super Constellation collecting survey data to support a world magnetic modeling and charting program called "Project Magnet."
After 21 years in the Navy, he retired and returned to school, earning bachelor's and master's degrees in education. He became a teacher in the Virginia Beach Public School System, where he taught woodworking and then drafting from 1966 to 1984.
After his "second retirement," already highly skilled at the craft, he turned his attention more-or-less full-time to mastering woodturning. He has since become one of the best known and renowned turners in the country, teaching master classes and passing on his knowledge and wisdom to anyone interested in learning.
Myron has been married for over 40 years to Sue Barton Harris - an artist and teacher in her own right. They've collaborated on creative projects throughout their marriage - including designing and building their extraordinary house in Sandbridge.
Having reached 100 years of age, Curtis has slowed a bit, but his creativity still shines through.