Curtis Gilmore Carey passed away on July 23, 2022, at the age of 53. Curtis was born in Houston, TX, on March 29, 1969, to Sally and Rowland Carey. Growing up in Houston, Curtis graduated from Stratford High School (Class of 1987) and went on to attend Texas Tech University. He was incredibly talented and creative and started his career in Dallas, TX, with Polo / Ralph Lauren (1991), which then took him to Beverly Hills, CA in 1993. Curtis subequently moved to New York City in 2000 and worked as a design director at Nautica, David Chu Design, Christina Saralegui and for the last 10 years at Kohl’s Exclusive Brands. Curtis loved to be with family and friends and opened his NYC apartment to any and all looking for a place to stay or entertain. Curtis also traveled extensively for both business and pleasure, with two specific milestone trips—one to South Africa with long-time friend Paul Hardoin where they fortuitously met Erika Szychowski and the other to London and Paris with his mother on her first journey across the Atlantic.
Curtis loved living in Manhattan but at the onset of the pandemic, he jumped at the opportunity to move to Isle of Hope in Savannah, GA. This generous offer was provided by Elfin and Brigitte Szychowski and after 20 years of the hustle and bustle of New York, Curtis quickly embraced the slower pace of life. It was also during this time that Curtis reconnected with Tim Oblak, long-time friend and subsequent partner. Their journey began in Venice, FL, and they soon returned to Georgia to call Isle of Hope home. Together they enjoyed taking the golf cart at sundown to “The Bluff;” lounging by the pool in the summer and by the firepit during the winter; sharing home cooked meals with Robert, Noel, and Ben Szychowski; judging Tobin Szychowski’s cannon balls into the pool; and visiting family and friends in Dallas, Los Angeles, and at “The Lakehouse” in South Carolina. Their time together was too short. Curtis’s family would like to express their thanks and gratitude to the entire Szychowski family for all the friendship and support provided to Curtis while living in Georgia.
Curtis was kind, generous, friendly, sophisticated and down to earth. He expected much of himself and of others and made everyone in his orbit feel special. He easily balanced hosting business dinners in London, China, Portugal and India while also entertaining at home - creating amazing charcuterie boards and cooking a mean pot roast or chicken divan for family and friends. Curtis was also a dog lover, growing up with Hannibal and Murphy and later exploring Manhattan with his four-legged companion extraordinaire, Duncan, who sadly passed away in 2017. Curtis was “that uncle” that everyone wants. He had an indescribable impact on the lives of his nieces and nephews—from hosting them in his apartment for weeks at a time, to badgering them that they weren’t staying out late enough when they came to visit, to introducing them to all things New York. His influence will be greatly missed.
Curtis is survived by his mother Sally Carey, brother Ron Carey and wife Pam, sister Susan Davis along with nieces and nephews, Meredith Carey, Drew Carey, S Davis, and Jack Davis. Curtis was preceded in death by his father, Rowland Carey. A private celebration of Curtis’s life will be held in Isle of Hope. Gifts in memory of Curtis may be made to Bideawee (a NYC pet rescue agency) at www.bideawee.org or the NYC ASPCA at www.aspca.org/nyc.
Thoughts and prayers for the entire Carey clan. I was a Stratford classmate and worked for Arteriors Home earlier in my career … we had a licensing deal with Nautica during the time Curtis worked with them. Great loss!!
- Dan LeNeveu, Katy, TX
Services under the direction of:
Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel
- The family is planning a private memorial gathering to celebrate and honor the life of Curtis Carey.