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Robert T. Crotty

Robert T. Crotty Obituary
Robert T. Crotty, a writer, professor, and college Dean, passed away on August 13, 2011 at the age of 73 in Manchester, NH. Crotty was born August 21, 1937 in Arlington, MA to William J. Crotty and Rita (Connaughton) Crotty. He grew up in Somerville, MA at 52 Highland Road, and graduated from Somerville High School in 1954. He attended the University of New Hampshire on a football scholarship, served in the Army from 1955 to 1957, and after his honorable discharge, returned to his English studies at UNH, graduating with the class of 1961. He married Mary Jane Burbank on May 5, 1961 at Perkins Cove in Ogunquit, ME. Crotty loved the theater, winning prizes for oration in high school, and performing at the Keene Summer Theatre and the Seacoast Repertory Theatre in Portsmouth, NH. Later he volunteered at the The Music Hall in Portsmouth. At the Iowa Writers Workshop, he earned an M.F.A. in English from the University of Iowa. He then took his family to Ireland for a year to work on his first novel in the tradition of famous Irish authors. Professor Crotty taught in the English department of Wisconsin State University at Superior, receiving tenure. He started the creative writing program at Roger Williams College in Rhode Island, bringing many famous guest lecturers to campus including Tom Wolfe. Crotty co-edited the book: Workshop: A Spontaneous Approach to Literature published in 1971. He settled with his family in Kennebunkport, ME. Starting as Professor of Creative Writing at Saint Francis College in Biddeford Pool, ME (now the University of New England), he became Chairman of the English Department, and then Dean of the Humanities College. He enjoyed antique cars, such as his 39 Chevy, was continuously writing short stories and screenplays, had encyclopedic knowledge about the Boston Red Sox, and loved to "hold court" at his favorite coffee shop in Market Square, Portsmouth. Crotty was pre-deceased by his former wife Mary Jane Burbank Crotty, and survived by his 3 sons: Sean of Palo Alto, CA, Liam of Miami Beach, FL and Brendan of Bethany Beach, DE, and 2 grandsons Keagan and Torin. He was also pre-deceased by his brother Frank, and survived by brothers Bill, Ed, Walter, and sister Mary Fleming. Burial was held at the Oak Grove Cemetery in Medford, MA on Saturday August 20, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. Immediately after the burial, a small memorial celebration was held, where he asked that friends "express outrageous stories about me that I will not be able to refute". In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the UNH Foundation Office at 9 Edgewood Road, Durham, NH 03824. Please put In Memory of Robert Crotty in the memo line.

Published in The Somerville Journal from Aug. 18 to Aug. 25, 2011
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