Douglas Adrian Cotter

Douglas Adrian Cotter

KILMARNOCK—Douglas Adrian Cotter of Kilmarnock passed away in the early morning of November 9, 2021, after a six-year battle with Parkinson’s Disease.

Doug was born on August 15, 1943, in Brockport, N.Y. He moved with his family to Asheville, N.C. when he was a teen and it was there that he starred in basketball and heard about “that nice little Lutheran school,” Duke University. When he received the Angier B. Duke Scholarship, he gave up every North Carolinian boy’s dream of being a Tar Heel! He graduated from Duke in 1965 with a bachelor’s in electrical engineering. He went on to earn both a master (1967) and doctorate (1970) of electrical engineering from NC State University. While in graduate school, he married and had two beautiful, blonde daughters who were the lights of his life.

After receiving his doctorate, he began his career at Corning Glass Works in Raleigh, N.C., working with pH glass and eventually creating Corning’s pH meter, the beginning of Corning’s long line of sophisticated laboratory instruments. He eventually moved with the company to Corning, N.Y., and to Colchester, England, for a two-year assignment where he led a team of medical instrument designers and negotiated joint business ventures for Corning. He then moved to Medfield, Mass., where he was managing director of Corning Medical where he oversaw worldwide instrument and diagnostic business development.

In his 19-year career with Corning, Doug was awarded five patents and directed the design and development of numerous scientific and biomedical instruments.

While at Corning, Doug attended the Harvard Program for Management Development and a few years later he launched several start-up companies including Healthcare Decisions Inc. In addition to his consulting work, he was an adjunct professor in biomedical engineering at Boston University from 1985 through 2008.

Doug retired with his wife, Anne, to Kilmarnock in 2003, and was ecstatic to have found what he considered to be the perfect location to live by the water and enjoy his long love of boating. There he became very active in the Indian Creek Yacht and Country Club (ICYCC) and was very proud to hold the distinctive honor of commodore in 2012. When he wasn’t enjoying a competitive game of tennis, he spent his time tinkering on his boat or volunteering his time at the Northern Neck-Middlesex Free Health Clinic.

Doug was also an avid ham radio operator, obtaining his radio license at age 11. He especially loved the moments on his radio when he was in a far-off anchorage at night and had a chance to communicate with someone “on the other side of the world.” While Doug could be an imposing figure in the board room or on the tennis court, he was a warm, quiet, gentle man and friend to all. He will be greatly missed.

He was predeceased by his parents, Adrian Edwards Cotter and Rita Marshall; and his younger sister, Dianne Elizabeth Cotter.

He is survived by his wife, Anne Thompson Cotter; and daughters, Beth McDermott (Jim, sons Brady and Casey and daughter Kelly) all of Rochester, N.Y. and Anne Ryan (Tom, son Collin and daughter Ashley), of Severna Park, Md. He is also survived by his brother, Derek “Rick” Cotter (Beverly) of Raleigh, N.C., and his former wife, Rosalyn (Parker) Kociemba, of Asheville.

The family would especially like to thank the caregivers of Visiting Angels of Kilmarnock, Hospice of Virginia, Hospice of the Chesapeake and Sunrise of Severna Park, and his other personal caregivers.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Parkinson’s Foundation, 2000 SE 1st Street, Suite 800, Miami, FL 33131 or to the Junior Sailing Program, ICYCC, 633 Club Drive, Kilmarnock, VA 22482.

A private celebration of Doug’s life will be held for special friends and family in the coming weeks.