Donald Grant Calmer 64, passed away at home after a lengthy battle with cancer. Don was born to James Donald Calmer and Reine Joyce Calmer.
He attended District 9 schools and graduated from Wahtonka High School in 1970. He joined the Navy as a Seabee and weapons specialist and was instrumental in constructing the initial phase of buildings on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean. He was proud to be one of the selected few chosen to train the Los Angeles police force because of his sharp- shooting skills.
Don met the love of his life, JoAnn Bennick (Windsor), and they were married May 30, 1981. He gladly stepped up to be a father to Shad, Aaron and Lisa.
He worked over 33 years at both The Dalles and Goldendale aluminum plants, holding many positions, ending his career at Northwest Specialties. He said the best thing about working at the plant was all the wonderful friends he made and considered them all to be his best buddies.
Don liked a good garage sale, was an avid fisherman and classic car buff, you could always find him in the garage working on some project. He enjoyed his annual hunting trips, whether he brought home anything or not. He looked forward every year to a trip to the Snake River, fishing with good friends. He also enjoyed the “sibling weekend” at the coast playing poker and having fun at the casino.
Don loved spending time with his grandkids, making sure he lectured them about the importance of preparing for their future. He loved his two little four-legged puppy kids, Cookie and Buster, who stayed faithfully by his side till the end.
Don was a man of strong character, he loved God, family, friends, and his country.
Preceding him in death was son, Shad Bennick, and mother, Reine Wilds.
Don is survived by his wife JoAnn; son, Aaron Bennick; daughter, Lisa Bennick; three grandchildren, Crystal Laverty (Antonio), Jacob Bennick, and Mercedes Bennick; and three great-grandchildren; father, James Calmer (Ida); sister, Corky Westman (Steve); brother, Ken Calmer (Jane); sister, Shelley Hinatsu (Steve); sister, Jamie Woodle (Jonathan); and several nieces and nephews.
Special thanks to the wonderful staff at the Celilo Cancer Center, especially Dr. Fu and Lynne Allen.
A celebration of life potluck will be held Saturday, Sept. 30, at The Mid-Columbia Senior Center 1112 W 9th at noon. A main dish will be provided, please bring a salad or dessert. This will be a time to celebrate Don’s life by sharing a meal and stories together.
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