Curtis L. Ertel, 60, Lower Paxton Township, passed away suddenly at Hershey Medical Center on Saturday, April 1, 2023.
Born December 17, 1962 in Williamsport, he was the son of the late Reinhold George and Marjorie L. (Miller) Ertel, and was also preceded in death by a baby brother, Reinhold Scott Ertel.
A 1980 graduate of Williamsport Area High School, Curt continued his education at Mansfield University, graduating with honors with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. While at Mansfield, he was a member of both an honor fraternity and a business fraternity.
On June 15, 1985, he married the former Karen D. Hunsinger. Curt worked in the Audit Department at the former Northern Central Bank until he accepted a position with the State Department of Human Services, moving to Harrisburg in 1997 and ultimately becoming a Supervisor. Karen and his sons followed him 1998, settling in the Colonial Park area.
In 1980, Curt started what would become a life-long desire to serve his community. He was a lieutenant with Williamsport Emergency Management until 1995. During the flood of 1996, he joined the Old Lycoming Township Volunteer Fire Company as a firefighter and EMT until relocating to Harrisburg, but remained a member of Old Lycoming until 1999. From 1999 until present day, he was a Life member and former Vice President of Colonial Park Fire Company #1, where he served on many committees, and was instrumental in the relocation, development and construction of a new, state-of-the-art firehouse, where it remains to this day. As much as he enjoyed helping with the business end of running a firehouse, though, his greatest joy was operating the various apparatuses and being on scene when he was needed the most.
From the Fire Company: “Curt selflessly served the fire company as a firefighter, apparatus chauffeur, trustee (2002-2020), and Vice-President ((2004-2016). He received several awards and citations from the company, the township, and the region for his dedication to the Colonial Park Fire Company and the citizens of Lower Paxton Township. Curt was the recipient of the President’s award in 2003, The Lower Paxton Lion’s Club award in 2003, and the Pioneer award in 2017. Vice-President Ertel was bestowed life membership status and a gold membership card in 2014 by a unanimous vote at the company meeting.”
Humble and dry-witted, his one-liners were guaranteed to make anyone’s day. He loved almost all music, especially classic rock; and recently taught himself how to play the drums.
Mostly, he cherished the time he spent with his family. He coached his sons’ baseball games (the original Little League) and helped with the Boy Scouts. He and Karen loved going on trips to Ocean City, MD and, with the boys, just taking one day family trips. He was always proud of his sons: Matthew for joining the Navy and serving his country, as well as continuing the tradition of serving his community in the Fire Company; and Kenny for being the second generation to graduate from Mansfield University. He leaves with them his legacy of possessing a strong work ethic and sense of humility.
Surviving is his beloved wife of almost 38 years: Karen D. (Hunsinger) Ertel; his two sons: Matthew R. Ertel, Harrisburg and Kenneth L. Ertel (and his husband, Chuck Hoy), Indianapolis; his sister: Crystal L. Dawson, Harrisburg; 3 grandsons: Logan Ertel, Avery Ertel, and Grayson Ertel; 2 nieces: Rebekah Dawson and Lindsay Dawson; mother-in-law: Doris Hunsinger, Williamsport; brother-in-law: Louis Hunsinger, Montoursville; his kitty: Cookie; and many other family members, friends, and his Fire Company family.
Services will be held 12:00 pm Monday, April 10, 2023 at Crosspoint United Methodist Church, 430 Colonial Road, Harrisburg, with the Rev. David D. Biser, officiating. There will be a viewing at the church Monday from 10:00 am until 11:30 am.
Burial will be in Woodward Township Cemetery, Linden, PA at 11:30 am Tuesday, April 11, 2023.
Contributions in his memory may be made to the Colonial Park Fire Company #1, 433 S. Houcks Road, Harrisburg, 17109.
Kimmel Funeral Home, Harrisburg, is handling arrangements.