James R. Gurney, 91, of Marion died August 30, 2021 at Tobey Hospital. He was the husband of the late Judith J. (Jenney) Gurney.
Born in New Bedford, Jim was the son of the late Ralph and Annie L. (Hartley) Gurney. As a young man, during the Korean War, he served in the Coast Guard at a remote radio outpost in Labrador. He was fond of saying that there was “a beautiful woman behind every tree” at his station. This was true only in that there were no trees.
Jim lived in Rochester and Marion. For his entire working life, he was employed as an electrical engineer for New England Telephone. Mr. Gurney later volunteered as a herring inspector in Rochester and Mattapoisett.
He was a handyman extraordinaire who could fix or improve almost anything. When he decided that the root cellar under his Rochester house was unacceptable, he borrowed his brother’s excavator, and simply built himself a “right proper” basement.
For a time, Jim helped run the Metacomet Sports Car Club, and even ran some races on his spacious property. Especially memorable were the ice races held on Snow’s Pond. Jim tended to win these, as his Citroens had front wheel drive, a rarity back then. Jim also enjoyed sailing, and kept his sailboat in Marion. He was a member, and teacher with the Power Squadron.
Survivors include his son, Spencer Gurney and his wife Lisa of Onancock, VA; two daughters, Lisa Walbridge of Marion and Heather Addison of Washington, DC; a sister, Joyce Cannon of Wareham, and many nieces and nephews.
His private arrangements are with the Saunders-Dwyer Mattapoisett Home for Funerals, 50 County Rd. (Rt. 6), Mattapoisett. For online guestbook, visit www.saundersdwyer.com.