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Home » Campus News Latest » Obituaries » Donald King Montez ’50

Donald King Montez, age 94, passed away peacefully on July 2, 2019 in St. Helena, CA after a short illness. Donald Montez was born in San Antonio, Texas in 1925. At a young age he moved to Iowa with his mother and stepfather. He attended Franklin High School, graduating in 1943. After High School he worked as a Window Designer for Marshall Fields in Chicago, IL.

He spent two years in the Navy prior to graduating from Antioch College in Ohio with a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1950. Upon graduating, he joined Kaiser Engineers, headquartered in Oakland, CA, where he spent his entire professional career.

Donald traveled throughout the world for Kaiser Engineers, including Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Canada and Diego Garcia Islands in the Indian Ocean. He was a talented, successful engineer, known for being extremely professional and getting the job done with ease.

He married Toni and had two children, Kim and Michelle, whom have both passed. Donald and Toni divorced and then Donald found Mary when they both worked at Kaiser Engineers. They married July 14th,1973, having a long and happy marriage for 44 years. They moved to Calistoga where they enjoyed their time together in their art studios spending hours on their masterpieces. Donald, from the years, 1981-1990 was a volunteer fireman with the Mountain Fire department when first moving to Calistoga. He then joined the City Council Planning Commission in Calistoga.

Throughout the years 2000-2004 he was recognized for his outstanding contributions. He enjoyed many things including his time working on European cars, like his red Austin Healey.

Donald enjoyed all kinds of music, especially jazz with this favorite, Charlie Hayden. A voracious reader, he read every issue of New Yorker magazine cover to cover! Donald was a talented, highly regarded painter, always perfecting his craft by attending art classes at the Calistoga Art Center and at Up Valley Campus, Napa Valley College. Nobody wore a vest, jacket, and tie with the assurance and class to equal Donald. A true gent, interested and interesting, he loved Calistoga and the Napa Valley. He will be remembered and missed by many.

Preceded in death by his daughter and son, he is survived by his loving wife, Mary Burke Montez, stepdaughter, Jennifer Adams Bunkers and six grandchildren; Taylor, Haley, Freddy, Georgia, Piper and Rowan Bunkers. We will be having a Celebration of Life; Potluck Picnic for Donald at Pioneer Park in Calistoga, on Sept 8, 2019 from 12-2:00. Please come and share your memories.