Howard Herbert Hill, beloved husband, father, grandfather, and friend, died in hospice are at age 91 on October 25, 2022, at the American House in Keene, NH.
He was the second of five children of Herbert T. and Mabel (Churchill) Hill. Born in Milbury, MA, in 1931, Mr. Hill grew up in Auburn, MA graduating with honors from Auburn High School in 1949. His education included Worcester Junior College and Worcester Polytechnical Institute where he earned a degree in electrical engineering. Later he attended the small company management institute at Harvard Business school.
Mr. Hill had a forty-year career in the field of computer technology, earning U.S. patents and industry awards for his design innovation. Among his employers were GE and IBM. At IBM, he developed technology for the SAGE air defense system during the Cold War. Later, Mr. Hill worked for Computer Control Corp. in Framingham, MA in the field of digital miniaturization of computers with applications for the defense industry. When that company was acquired by Honeywell Corp., Mr. Hill moved to Cape Cod where he managed Benthos Oceanographic for several years before founding his own marine electronics company, Datamarine International Inc. in 1970. Datamarine manufactured navigation instruments for fishing and pleasure boats. For 15 years the company won design awards and set the industry standards for excellence.
When Mr. Hill took the business public, he became CEO and Chairman of the Board. It was listed under the trade name DMAR. In 1990, Mr. Hill was forced into retirement through a hostile take over at the board level. Unfortunately, the company closed within five years.
In retirement, Mr. Hill moved to his estate in Fitzwilliam, NH and became a well-known watercolor artist and teacher in the Monadnock Region and beyond. He won awards at Sharon Art Association, Keene’s Art in the Park, and the Jaffrey Civic Center. His artwork is found in museums, corporate and private collections in New England and abroad.
In 1988, Mr. Hill married Deborah A. Bayles at his estate in Fitzwilliam. She was his soulmate and they enjoyed sailing along the New England coast as well as flying small planes out of the Keene, NH and Hyannis, MA airports.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Hill is survived by his three children and their families: Cathy Hill Klug and Robert H. Hill, both of Dennis, MA, and James H. Hill, of Centerville, MA. Their children and grandchildren; Logan Klug and his son Nolan of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Alexander Hill of Hawaii and his daughter Asana of Dennis, MA, Nicolas Hill of Barnstable, MA and James H. Hill and his son Isaac Hill of Centerville, MA. He is also survived by his stepchildren and wife’s grandchildren who loved him dearly. They are Leslie H. Courtney of Providence, RI and her children, Erin, Connor and James Courtney, Courtney H. Abruzzo (Nick) and their daughter, Annebelle of Burbank, CA and Bradford D. Stoesser (Zoe) and their daughters Phoebe, Madeline, and Gwyneth of Chestnut Hill, MA.
A memorial service will be held at the United Church of Christ, 23 Central Square, Keene, NH, 03431 in the Spring. Burial will be private at the Cathedral of the Pines in Rindge, NH.
Memorial donations can be made in Howard’s name to the Cathedral of the Pines, 10 Hale Hill Road, Rindge, NH, 03461; or to the Hundred Nights Homeless Shelter, 17 Lamson Street, Keene, NH 03431, or to the Monadnock Humane Society, 101 W Swanzey Road, Swanzey, NH 03446.