Thomas R. Curtiss age 69 passed away on July 21, 2018. Tom was born in Spokane, WA where he attended Ferris High School. He became interested in aviation at an early age. He pursued his interest with the encouragement of his uncle Keith who worked for Wien Air Alaska based in Anchorage, AK. Tom was a flight instructor both in Spokane and Fairbanks, AK. In 1974 he became a bush pilot based in Bethal, AK for Wien. After flying several types of aircraft in the Alaskan bush he became a co-pilot on the Boeing 737. While he was based in Seattle he met and married Janet Schmitz. In 1981 he became captain on that aircraft. In 1984 the airline declared bankruptcy which was followed by the birth of their son David in 1985. To continue his career as a pilot he moved his family to Chandler, AZ and started working for a small airline named American West Air-lines. He continued his aviation career with AWA until he retired in 1996.
At that time he once again moved his family to Payson, AZ. At that time he and Jan purchase Granny’s Attic in 2000. The store was sold twice and re-turned to them twice and is currently run by Jan.
Tom is survived by his wife Jan Curtiss, son David Curtiss, daughter Nicolle Hesse, 4 grandsons, Colter Bienas, Landon Bienas, Doc Curtis and Wyatt Curtiss, great-grandson Byrton Michael Bienas, brother Bill Curtiss, sister Bonnie Faler, niece Traci McMillan and nephew Shane Curtiss.
There was a Celebration of Life for close friends and family located in Gilbert, AZ in late October. Please send any donations to St. Jude Children’s Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105 or any children’s hospital.
Tom has often said “I have lived a long wonderful life but children in need deserve to enjoy a long life as well.”