David B. Pinkham, Jr. 67 died unexpectedly at his residence, West Street on July 3, 2019. Born in New London, CT on July 24, 1951 to Theresa (Pero) Pinkham and David B. Pinkham, Sr. He attended schools in New London and Stonington, CT. In 1969 he joined the U.S. Army to serve his country in Vietnam until he was honorably discharged.
David became one of the countless Veterans who suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and depression. Perhaps it was in searching for escape and relief he also became addicted to drugs and alcohol. Yet this is not just an obituary of David's struggles, challenges, fears and obstacles....it is about who David was, what he was able to do, and be, because of and in spite of his struggles with PTSD, depression, addictions, and physical challenges.
After his discharge in 1971, he worked as a skilled carpet and tile installer with Builders Tile in Uncasville and Cluff's Carpet in Waterford. He was proud of being on the crew that installed the flooring at the Port n' Starboard Banquet Hall at one of his favorite places, Ocean Beach in New London, CT. He also took great pride as an Art Stone Mason and designed beautiful landscapes for friends in Greenfield. Proud of his Native American Seneca culture, David poured his energy into creating Native American drums, jewelry, pottery, writings, participating in Pow Wows, sweat lodges and walking labyrinths.
As a Wounded Warrior, he sought support through VA channels, AA and NA, through spiritual and mountain retreats, with his many, many friends, and through service to others. Even in his struggles he always had time to listen and lend a helping hand to fellow Veterans, addicts and friends. Years ago he was instrumental in starting a recovery meeting which continues to offer support to alcoholics and addicts to this day. It was from support meetings such as these that he met some of his closest and dearest friends.
Family was very important to David, especially celebrating their summer birthdays with his sister Sharon Rainville at his beloved Ocean Beach in New London. He enjoyed steamers and seafood dinners and loved the joy at Christmas.
David waged an unrelenting battle against PTSD, mental depression, and addictions yet the Spirit of David B. Pinkham, Jr. soars with the Eagles "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" chanting to the beat of his beloved Native drums. Thank you, David, for all you were and all you did, for fighting your demons so valiantly and for so long, for your love, friendship and laughter. Thank you, Cherished Warrior, our lives would not have been the same if you had not been in them and now that you have gone nothing will be the same. You will always be held in our hearts.
David's memory will be cherished by his sister Sharon Rainville (Ed) of New London; Nephews Thomas Doyle, Jr.(Christina) of Shelton, CT and Shaun Dibble of New London; Grandnieces Marisa and Mallory Doyle and Narice and Maya Dibble and by his long time friend of 33 years, Francine Schuch of New London. Among his close Native American friends was Bob Dean "Shadow Hawk"....who took David under his wing and they became like brothers. Brothers they will always remain. He was predeceased by his parents Theresa and David Pinkham, Sr.
David's family is grateful for the care, expertise, love and support of his Primary Care Team at Greenfield Outpatient Clinic, Greenfield; Northampton VA Medical Center, Leeds, MA; Baystate Franklin Medical Center, Greenfield; Wayne Garfinkel and Staff at Network Chiropractic of Franklin County, Greenfield; Cheryle Harrell, Shelburne Falls and his faithful long time cleaning lady Deb.
Private Funeral services will be held at a future date determined by his family. A Celebration of Life will be held in Greenfield, MA at a future date. Donations in David's name may be made to Vietnam Veterans of America, Green River House, Visioning B.E.A.R. Circle Intertribal Coalition, Prevention of Suicide or just by paying it forward in his name.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Kostanski Funeral Home. For condolences, please visit www.kostanskifuneralhome.com
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