Donald William ListAugust 5, 1943 ~ June 30, 2017 (age 73)
Some lives end much too soon and with no warning, and Don still had lots left that he planned to do. Still, he collapsed while walking around the lake by his house, a walk he did nearly every day just to see the changes in the water, the wildlife and the vegetation or to pick something up at a nearby store. Even with an ambulance ride and lots of excellent medical care, he still passed in a matter of hours.
Don leaves behind Lorraine Monheiser List, his wife of 25 years; a son, Kent, in Ridgefield, WA, and a daughter, Nichelle, in Littleton from his first marriage to Sharon Guthrie List, along with Nichelle’s husband, Robert Tijerina, and Alex, Don’s cherished grandson. He also left a sister, Sharyn Gerhardt in Everett, WA, and a nephew and two nieces in the Seattle area. Lorraine’s sons, Jeff and Dave Monheiser have lost a good friend and mentor, and their four sons, Ashton, Nick, Tate and Evan have known Grampa Don all their lives.
Born in McAllen, Texas, Don always joked that he was more of a Colorado native than Lorraine. Even though she was born in Colorado, he left Texas at the age of three months and so had lived longer in Colorado than she had. Don was a graduate of the first class at George Washington High School in Denver, though his ties were always to South, not GW. He was an engineering graduate from the University of Colorado and worked for many years as a structural engineer in Denver. Don’s projects included several buildings in downtown Denver, along with Coors Field and Denver International Airport.
For many years, Don and Lorraine were avid cyclists, and rode their first Ride the Rockies in 1998, including biking over Trail Ridge Road from Estes Park to Granby. Once they discovered Ride the Rockies, Don (and sometimes Lorraine) was pretty much a regular. By the time Don cut back on his outdoor cycling, he had climbed most of the passes in Colorado, including both sides of Trail Ridge.
Don was an intrepid traveler, and he and Lorraine have been on six continents, and visited well over 50 countries. Combining biking with travel led them to Canada, New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, Austria and Czechia on various bike tours. Even without bikes, they continued to explore new destinations, most recently South Africa and Victoria Falls in March 2017.
No description of Don would be complete without explaining the depth of his commitment to his grandson, Alex. Ever since Alex was a toddler, there has been “Alex Day” or “Grampa Day”, depending on your perspective. Once a week Don and Alex got together, which could be during the day in the summer and after school from August through May. Sometimes they planned activities like fishing or swimming, but mostly they just talked, shared the Sunday funnies, did projects together, organized Don’s coin collection, shared a meal, and enjoyed each other’s company.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 15th at 10:30 at Drinkwine Mortuary’s Chapel. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Don’s name to the University of Colorado College of Engineering.
Don was buried with full military honors on July 6th at Fort Logan National Cemetery.