Local developer dead at age 53
- Bill Sheehy
ot;Bob Durkee will be sorely missed ..." was the instant response Monday morning. Many people in the downtown business community were shocked when they learned of the local businessman's death. Durkee passed away Sunday at home.
Remembering Durkee, his good friend Mike Warren said he played an important part in the development of Prineville. "Barnes Butte Subdivision, Northridge and Westridge subdivisions, those were some of Durkee's projects," Warren said. "There are 400 to 500 sites of affordable housing in Prineville because of him. But for all that, profit wasn)t a four-letter word for Bob. He knew the community's needs and filled them, but he was still very focused."
A man with vision was another way Durkee was described. "I remember when he first talked about Northridge," Warren continued. "There he was, scribbling on a napkin, laying out where the streets would be, the types of houses he'd build and the financing ... laying it all out. He was fearless."
Apparently real estate development wasn't the only kind of business Durkee had experience with. His close friend Gene Wheeler recalled that Durkee had once owned a floor covering, paint and furniture store. "That was right across the street from the old PP&L office. He sold that. He was always into something, though. He had the Quick Stop restaurant there on Third Street, where Boss Hoggs is now. Best hamburgers in town. And then there was the Chrysler/Dodge dealership. He was always into something."
Without a doubt, Durkee)s death is a loss to the local business community, or as Warren said it, "he'll be sorely missed."
The death notice and announcement of services are on the obituary page, the full obituary will be printed in Thursday's edition.