Curtis L. McKee, 77, of Kountze passed away Sunday, Jan. 13, at Harbor Hospice House in Beaumont. Curtis was born on March 5, 1935 to Bill and Clara (Reid) McKee of Colmesneil. The early years of his life were spent at the Austin School for the Blind. Curtis never allowed his blindness to be a handicap. During his time at the school he participated in track, wrestling, broad jump and band. He received various trophies, metals and patches for his many achievements.

After graduation, he was the first blind student to attend Lamar University in Beaumont. He also attended the University of Texas and graduated from the University of North Texas with a degree in psychology and sociology. Curtis was a charter member and the first president of the American Council of the Blind of Texas. During his life he was a rehab teacher for newly blind and assisted them in learning to cope and live with their condition. He also later became a computer instructor for the blind.

He was the author of a book, How to Use the Chinese Abacus. Curtis had a love for life, work, friends and a passion for music. In his later years his time was spent sharing his love for music with others by playing his fiddle with musician friends. Beverly and Curtis would travel to nursing homes in the area, SCAT luncheons, church functions or anywhere else that requested to hear him play and share in their joy of music together. Curtis never met a stranger he didn’t like. He was a joy to everyone that got the pleasure of knowing him. Curtis was a loving husband, dad and grandpa.

He will be greatly missed by his wife of 11 years, Beverly; sons, Casey McKee of Warren, Clancy McKee of Batson; daughter. Robyn Dollinger and husband, Shane of Vidor; step daughters, Bambi Bentley and husband, Mark of Kountze and Beth Burrows of Jasper; grandchildren, Shayla, Brayden, Gabrielle, Jared, Grace, Kynadi, Zachery, Riley, Isiah and Cameryn; one great grandchild, Natalie Denise and countless other family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; late wife, June; daughter Deidre Denise (Dede) and four brothers, Buck, Vernon, Dan and J. V.

In honor of Curtis’ wishes, there will be no public services. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Curtis’ memory to Relay For Life or the charity of your choice.