Mel Dunayer, 74, Was Veteran of World War

Mel Dunayer, 74, of Edgartown died unexpectedly at the New England Medical Center in Boston on Sunday, June 9. A retired World War II Navy Air Corps veteran, he was born July 19, 1924, and raised in the Bronx, N.Y. As a senior at the Dewitt Clinton High School, he enlisted in the US Navy following the attack on Pearl Harbor, and served in the South Pacific.

Mr. Dunayer had an eclectic career ranging from an AAA driving instructor, an insurance broker and a charter fishing captain to owner of the Edgartown Paint Store since 1985. Aside from his work history, he was a proverbial storyteller who made everyone smile.

Moving to the Island in 1975 from New York city, Mr. Dunayer found his home. He embraced his new life with enthusiasm and love. He was a popular member of the Martha's Vineyard Regional High School hockey parents' club, the high school touchdown booster club and the Pink Squid Yacht Club in Edgartown. He was a great fundraiser and asset to these organizations.

He leaves his wife, Joan (McLaughlin) Dunayer of 23 years; his three children, Philip Dunayer of Mobile, Ala., Kathy Jo Dunayer of Israel and Steven Dunayer of Boston; three step-children, Kathleen Dougherty of New York city, Kara Dougherty of Vineyard Haven and Patrick Dougherty of Weymouth; a granddaughter, Lucie Dougherty-Soares, and a sister, Marilyn Chuck of California.

A graveside service will be held Friday, June 14, at 2:30 p.m. at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne. A remembrance gathering will be held at the Wharf restaurant in Edgartown on Sunday, June 16, starting at 1 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Mel's memory may be made to either the Martha's Vineyard Arena, the Martha's Vineyard Regional High School Touchdown Booster Club or to the Pink Squid Yacht Club Scholarship Fund. Arrangements are by the Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home in Oak Bluffs.