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It is with great sadness that the family of Donald J. Welcome, a longtime resident of Pleasant Hill announce that he passed away on February 5, 2018, at age 78 after battling many health challenges including Diabetes and a stroke that left him aphasic for the last 24 years of his life. A role model for us all, Don faced everything life presented to him with faith, courage and optimism. He had an amazing ability to endure discomfort and pain without complaint.
Don was born on July 11, 1939, and raised in Bend OR. There, he attended Bend Senior High where he was a Yell Leader on the rally squad, participated in track, was the homecoming king and a member of the Key Club. In 1961, Don graduated from Lewis & Clark College in Portland with a degree in Business and was promptly hired by Del Monte Food Corporation. Following a long and successful career at Del Monte, Don retired in 1989 as Director of Financial & Administrative Systems.
Never wanting to be idle, Don spent much of his time helping others in whatever manner was needed. He loved doing taxes for family and friends as well as working at H & R Block after retirement. Don was a member of Faith Lutheran Church for 48 years serving in many capacities. He especially enjoyed being a member of the Over-the-Hill Gang.
Throughout his life, Don loved to have fun and create fun for others. A few of the activities he enjoyed included camping, fishing, and driving the boat to pull the girls around the lake on water skis, over and over again! He liked music and loved to dance! Don also loved playing games, especially pinochle, poker, cribbage, and dominoes. He was exceptionally good at working crossword and jigsaw puzzles. Other hobbies included reading, photography and building birdhouses. He enjoyed watching Jeopardy, cheering on the San Francisco Giants and woodworking with his brother Tom. Don also liked to cook and will always be remembered for the delicious donuts he’d make every year on Halloween. Even in his later years, Don was always up for a party or for just having a beer with friends.
Following his stroke in 1994, Don became one of the first members of the Aphasia Center of CA. Belonging to the Aphasia Center gave Don the gift of many good friends and enriched the quality of his life beyond measure.
Don treasured his family, friends and his “extended family" who are too numerous to personally name.
Don leaves behind his loving wife of 49 years, Vicki. Daughters: Karri, Debbie, Lisa (Bill) & Tami (Ken), Grandchildren: Rachelle (Mike), Tessa (Brian), Christopher (Katie), Lance (Brittani), Nicholas (Angela), Shane, Alexis, Danielle, and Caity. Great Grandchildren: Chase, Riley, Makaio, Kayden, Stella, Mikayla and Everly. Nephew and Nieces: Mike (Sherry), Pat (Kiki) and Pam (David).
Don is preceded in death by his parents Wes & Ruby Welcome, infant sister Dorothy Jean, brother Tom, nephew Dennis, Son-in-law’s Ray (Debbie) & Brian (Karri) and infant Grandson Jesse. He always had a special place in his heart for his childhood dog, Beans and his precious Mimi. We find comfort in knowing he is with God and all of them again.
There will be a memorial service at Faith Lutheran Church on Saturday, March 3rd at 11:00 a.m. The church is located at 50 Woodsworth Lane, Pleasant Hill. A reception will immediately follow in the Fellowship Hall.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in Don’s memory to the Aphasia Center of CA, 3996 Lyman Road, Oakland, CA 94602-1857.