Duane Austin Fiehler, 73 passed away suddenly at the Capitol Library on Tuesday, January 22, 2019. Duane was born on July 16,1945 in Bridgeport, CT to Ruth Kinney Fiehler and Herman Walter Fiehler. He was preceded in death by his parents and his beloved friend of 43 years, Cindy Weston.
Duane graduated from Central High School in 1963 in Bridgeport and after graduation worked for Lyons & Mather Architects. During the 1980’s he and his mom returned to Belgrade, ME where Ruth had grown up and where the family had summered for years on the Kinney farm. Duane’s sister Emily and her family were living in Orono, ME and the family was thankful to be near each other. Duane gained employed at the State of Maine’s Bureau of General Services in Augusta where he took great pride in his work preparing print materials for the State legislature until his retirement in April 2017.
Despite having cerebral palsy and epilepsy, Duane enjoyed many pursuits. He had a photographic memory and a passion for studying volcanoes, baseball (Red Sox fan), and presidents. He could recall even the most obscure trivia on these topics and enjoyed daily visits to the Maine State Library to conduct research. His family thanks the library staff who assisted him over many decades. The PBS NOVA special Kilauea: Hawai’i on Fire aired the day after his passing. He would have wanted to share this program with his friends and family. In Duane’s memory, watch online to learn about destructive and life-giving aspects of volcanoes.
Duane was a member of the Lakes Christian Fellowship Church and enjoyed deep connections with his church family. His friends were a lifeline for him providing daily transportation to and from Augusta, companionship, and a listening ear for the latest news on volcanoes and other natural disasters. Duane was also very fond of his cats who were a source of both comfort and entertainment.
He is survived by his sister Emily Wetherall of South Bend, IN, his nieces Willow Wetherall of South Bend, IN, Kristin Wetherall of NYC, NY, and Emberly Wetherall of Wanaka, New Zealand, his cousins Carol Kellogg of E. Norwalk, CT, Roy Fiehler of Springhill, FL, Janet Fiehler of FL, Lynda Fiehler of Bridgeport, CT, Mark White of Augusta, ME and his aunts Mary White of Augusta, ME and Florence Fiehler of Bridgeport, CT.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, February 2, 2019 from 11 AM-1 PM EST at the North Belgrade Baptist Church, 8 Station Rd., Belgrade, ME, 04917.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Lakes Christian Fellowship Church or the Maine State Library.