David Donald Underwood died peacefully on May 28 at Newton Wellesley Center for Alzheimer’s Care, with his daughter and caretaker Melissa by his side. He was 90.

David was born in Boston on March 31, 1931, to Charles Wheeler Underwood and Marion Ball Underwood. He was nestled in the middle of 11 brothers and sisters, along with two cousins as close as siblings. His commitment to and love of family would be his greatest legacy.

Following graduation from Boston English High School, he served in the Merchant Marines and U.S. Army, traveling to every continent except Antarctica. He returned home and soon met his beloved wife of 61 years, Dorothy Bruce Underwood. He and Dorothy were always at each other’s sides as they raised their daughters Michelle, Jennifer and Melissa. He was a man of integrity, gentle strength and boundless love,

In 1960, David and Dorothy bought their first home in Randolph, where they raised their family. Soon after moving, he began a 20-year career with American Biltrite in Cambridge, rising through the ranks from line worker to chief foreman. In the mid-1980s, a career change brought him to Dorchester district court where he worked another 20 years and retired as assistant clerk magistrate.

David and Dorothy began vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard in the early 1960s. Their dream of purchasing a vacation home soon became a reality with a fixer-upper in Oak Bluffs. David’s favorite Island pastime was to walk to the Inkwell each morning, sit on the bench that his daughters had dedicated to their parents and chat with friends old and new. They made the Island their permanent residence in 2000, perfectly timed to enjoy more quality time with their grandchildren.

He was known affectionately as Papa and nothing made him happier than to spend time with his grandchildren. In 2020, he became a great-grandfather and that brought new joy and brightness to his life during otherwise challenging times.

Inaddition to his wife, he is survived by daughters Michelle Tyndal, Melissa Perry and Jennifer Thomas and her husband David; grandchildren Joshua Somoano, Rebecca Thomas, Lydia Perry, Jared Thomas and Joseph Perry; great-grandson Joshua Somoano Jr.; sister Laura Horne and her husband Emanuel; cousin Inez Mercadel George; former sister in law Gretchen Tucker Underwood; Manuel Somoano, Michael Perry and Heidy Murillo; and a host of nieces, nephews, extended family and friends who loved him dearly. He was predeceased by his parents; siblings Edna Terry, Gladys Mercadel, Charles, Muriel Dymond, Henry, Victoria Roberts, John, Helen Johnson, Michael, and Sylvia Langley; and cousin Earl Mercadel Jr.

Because of the pandemic, the family plans a private memorial.

Smile when you think of David. He was a storyteller who loved to share memories of his family and friends. Those close to him loved to listen to them. People wishing to honor his lifelong commitment to kindness and family values can be inspired to keep telling stories. Stories will forever keep David in our hearts.