Former Firestone Exec, Grandson of Harvey S. Firestone Dies

Former Firestone Exec, Grandson of Harvey S. Firestone Dies

Kimball Curtis Firestone, 90, a former executive of the tire company founded by his grandfather Harvey S. Firestone and the long-time proprietor of a popular Maryland restaurant, died on Monday, June 3, at his home in Middletown, Maryland.

Kimball Curtis Firestone, 90, a former executive of the tire company founded by his grandfather Harvey S. Firestone and the long-time proprietor of a popular Maryland restaurant, died on Monday, June 3, at his home in Middletown, Maryland.

He was born in Los Angeles on November 26, 1933. He was the son of the late Leonard K. Firestone and Polly Curtis Firestone. His father was president of The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company of California and served as United States Ambassador to Belgium from 1974 through 1976.

His tire pioneer grandfather founded The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company in Akron, Ohio, in 1900.

Kimball Firestone earned a bachelor of arts degree and a master of business administration degree from Stanford University. Following service in the U. S. Army, Kimball joined The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company in 1964 in Akron, where he served in real estate and finance posts. In 1969, he moved to the company’s government affairs office in Washington, D.C., as associate manager.  He became manager of government affairs in 1970 and vice president of government relations in 1973.

In 1976, Kimball resigned from the company to pursue private business interests.

Kimball Firestone served on Firestone’s board of directors from 1974 until 1988, when the company was acquired by Bridgestone Corporation.

While he was a resident of Akron, Kimball was active in community affairs.  He was president of Akron Child Guidance Center, vice president of the Akron YMCA and vice president of Junior Achievement of Akron. He also was a member of the board of advisors of St. Thomas Hospital.

Kimball Firestone was president of his family’s Firestone Foundation from 1974 until 1983.

For decades, Kimball managed his farms, first in Potomac and later in Middletown, where he raised crops and bred thoroughbred racehorses.  He was a dedicated hands-on operator working on the daily routines of the horses and the scientific process of breeding thoroughbreds, as well as spending time aboard tractors mowing the fields.

In 1999, he opened Firestone’s Culinary Tavern in Frederick, Maryland, which he continued to operate along with Firestone’s Market on Market, an adjoining gourmet food and wine shop.

Kimball served in numerous civic and community organizations, including as a board member of Washington Hospital Center, United Service Organizations (USO) and board president of Holton Arms School. In Frederick, he was a board member of Frederick Health Hospice and was a benefactor to Frederick County Hospital Cancer Institute.

He was a founding member of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) of the Unted States Department of Defense and delivered remarks at the organization’s 50th anniversary celebration at the Pentagon in 2022.  

He wrote a book in 2013, entitled “Reflections on a Silver Spoon: How a Foodie Found Home.” In his book, Kimball described how he eventually found his passion for food and the restaurant industry later in his professional life.

Kimball is survived by daughter Carey (Tim) Romer of Palos Verdes Estates, California, and sons William Curtis (Terrie) Firestone of Hillsborough, California, Leonard (Nicole) Firestone of Fort Worth, Texas, and Christopher (Whitney) Firestone of Boise, Idaho; Laurie G. Firestone of Newport Beach, California, the mother of their children, as well as 13 grandchildren and two great-granddaughters.

He also is survived by brother Brooks (Kate) Firestone of Santa Barbara, California, sister Lendy Firestone Brown of Lexington, Kentucky, and stepsons Borya (Kristen) Roslov of Dallas, Texas, and Alyosha Kachalov, Annapolis, Maryland.

In addition to his parents, he was pre-deceased by his daughter Kimberley Firestone in 1978.

The family will receive friends on Wednesday, June 12 from 4-7 p.m. at Kenney and Basford Funeral Home, 106 E. Church Street, Frederick, Maryland 21701. Funeral services will be held on Thursday, June 13 at 11 a.m. at All Saints Episcopal Church, 106 W. Church Street, in Frederick.

Memorials may be made to the Downtown Frederick Partnership (www.downtownfrederick.org).

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