I'd be interested in seeing actual figures on revolver repair by brand, though I have no idea how they might be obtained. Smith and Ruger are built with wider tolerances that aren't present in Colt, so that might be a source of longevity, that's true, but it also might be a source of problems.
The only revolver I ever had just flat freeze up into inop status was a Smith K-frame. I could not open the cylinder and had to take it to a gunsmith instead. I also had a K-frame's hammer spur just break off during dry-firing (I had never dropped it), and while that didn't take it out of action, it left a sour taste regarding robustness.
I think Ruger is plenty robust and bought one for my daughter when she left home. I hope it doesn't need Ruger's attention (ever) because I have more action-smoothing money in it than in the purchase price, and Ruger will set it back to factory specs. While that's not a comment on longevity, it might be a disadvantage that's seldom mentioned.
So, I wonder what the Colt DS will be like after a few years with its fitted parts being wear items. For now they're fixable, and I don't think I'll be shooting mine much more than you did yours.
(BTW, I believe you're right about the smaller frames and wartime service. I probably misread something somewhere or was thinking about my first revolver, the Colt 1917 - similar lockwork, I suppose, but not identical to the D-frame.)