Stephen “Steve” Montminy

BAR HARBOR – Stephen “Steve” Montminy died unexpectedly on Sept. 7, 2023, in a tragic accident on Mount Desert Island at the age of 65. His family, the community, and all who knew him are deeply saddened and shocked by his sudden death. To know Steve was to love him, and people across the world in countries near and far are reeling from the tragic news.

Steve, the oldest of five children, was born on Feb. 15, 1958, to parents Philip Arthur and Joy Maire (Bureau) Montminy in Portland. He grew up in Waterville and graduated from Waterville High School in 1977. If a common thread could be seen through Steve’s life, it would be his unerring and steadfast commitment to family and public service and the lifelong pursuit of helping people. Steve joined the United States Air Force in 1977 and had a highly successful career of 24 years, serving in Desert Storm. He retired as a master sergeant in 2001 with an associate degree in Applied Science under his belt, many honors, and countless peers and subordinates who called him a friend and mentor.

Steve started his prolific military career at Pease Air Force Base in Portsmouth, N.H. as an avionics technician. Here he reconnected with a childhood acquaintance, Kathleen “Kat” Riley of Winslow, who he quickly realized was his soul mate, best friend, and meant to be his wife. Without hesitation, Kat stepped into the role of wife and mother to Steve’s beloved son, Nathaniel “Nate” Montminy, from his first marriage. The trio embarked on a life of fun and adventure together at stations in Atwater, Calif.; Okinawa, Japan; and lastly, Grand Forks, N.D., where Steve retired from the Air Force.

Steve had a passion for learning and living life to its fullest. He earned his pilot’s license and diving certification in Okinawa, often spending weekends flying with Nate over the Ryukyu islands, diving among some of the most beautiful coral reefs in the world with Kat and Nate, and immersing himself in the Japanese culture. While overseas, he connected with many people who have spread across the world but remain lifelong friends and family.

Upon retiring, Steve, Kat and Nate settled in Bar Harbor, where he worked for Hinkley Yachts for two years and then stepped into his role for the last 21 years as the Chief Water Operator for the Northeast Harbor Water Plant in the Mount Desert water district. Steve’s commitment to public service continued when he joined the Mount Desert Fire Department as a volunteer and EMT. He was also past president of the Blue Hill Rifle and Pistol Club, and a member of the American Legion and MDI Photo Club. Steve always said the best job in the world was being a father, and his deep need to help people made an indelible mark on his son who followed in his hard-to-fill footsteps both in volunteering and careers in the military and public service. As his beloved wife, Kat Montminy, always said, “In a crisis, when others run away from a fire, if someone is in need, Steve and Nate are running into it.”

Steve loved nothing more than making a connection with people. His mustache-lined smile and infectious laugh were hallmarks of the community. It was often joked that any activity with Steve would require hours of extra time because he would inevitably run into someone or a dozen someone’s he knew who would want to catch up. He was a kind and gentle soul who not only had an unparalleled way of connecting with people but also with animals. He had countless stories of fun animal encounters and spent most mornings feeding his chipmunk friends directly out of his hands and evenings chatting softly with the generations of deer that visited him on his back deck.

Steve is survived and missed by his loving wife, Kat Montminy of Bar Harbor; and son, Nate Montminy of Hampden (wife Lera and grandsons Cash and Bayu). He will forever be cherished by sister, Sharon Jolicoeur of Oakland (husband Ken, son Tyler and daughters Jessica and Kylie); brother, Stan Montminy of Waterville (wife Colleen and daughter Casey); sister, Sonya Marrello of Londonderry, N.H. (husband Joe and sons Matt St. Cyr, Alex St. Cyr and Andrew St. Cyr); and brother, Philip Montminy Jr. of Las Vegas, Nev. (partner Kendra Gray and daughters Kaia and Jade). His memory also lives on with several beloved cousins and dear friends.

Steve was predeceased by his parents; and a very special uncle, Lee Bureau.

Family and friends are invited to attend a celebration of life with an opportunity to visit from 1 to 2 p.m., with a service to follow at 2 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 5, 1139 Main St., Mount Desert. A graveside service will be held 10 a.m., Friday, Oct. 6 at the Maine Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, 143 Blue Star Ave., Augusta. The service on Oct. 5 will be live streamed and recorded. Please go on for the live stream link, and to share any personal reflections, photos, or stories of Steve’s life.

Steve will be forever missed by the many lives he touched.

Condolences may be expressed at

In lieu of flowers, details for memorial donations

will be announced.

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