Dr. Donald D. Mee (affectionately known as Doc Mee) passed away on June 3, 2009 of Alzheimer's disease in Richland, Wa where he had resided for the past 3 years due to his illness. He was a humble and soft spoken man who will be remembered for his gentle nature, delightful sense of humor, honesty, generosity and his willingness to share his knowledge and to help others.
Don was born in Great Falls, Montana on May 25, 1931, the third of 14 children born to Lyle and Maude Mee. He grew up in the small town of Highwood, Montana where he was active in sports, loved hunting and fishing and working on his grandfather's ranch.
After graduating from Highwood High in 1949, he attended Montana State College in Bozeman for 3 years where he met Kathryn Gottlob whom he married in 1954. He continued his education at WSU's School of Veterinary Medicine in Pullman, Wa, graduating in 1957. He was a very good student and was affectionately dubbed "Dennis the Menace" because of his penchant for teasing his classmates.
He then moved with his family back to Bozeman where he worked for 5 years before moving to Ellensburg, WA in 1962 where he established the Valley Veterinary Hospital. Don loved his work, especially with large animals and was always proud to be of service to the ranching community of Kittitas County. He was a member of the American Veterinary Association, the Washington State Veterinary Association, the Lion's Club, the Cowboy Church and spent many hours working there and at Camp Illahee. He served as president of the Camp Fire Board of Directors and served on the Kittitas County Planning Commission.
Don was a true outdoorsman and loved backpacking into the Alpine Wilderness, camping and cross country skiing up the Teanaway and downhill skiing at Mission Ridge. During his retirement years, he was most often found tending his extensive vegetable and flower gardens. He also built numerous bluebird houses which can be found in the Colockum and Coleman Canyon areas.
He is survived by his wife Shirley and his former wife Kathryn. He is also survived by his children, Wendy Mee of Ellensburg, Karen James of Durango, Co; David Mee (Marina) of Richland, Cheryl DeLappe (Mark Davidson) of Newcastle and Dewey Mee of Ellensburg.
His surviving step children are Dale Jurgens (Kathy) of Ellensburg, Gail Brown and Joni Leninger of Richland, and Karen Skellenger (Steve) of Redmond, OR. He leaves eight grandchildren, Mario and Tony Spencer, Kezia, Kelsey and MacKenzie Knutson, James and David DeLappe and Masha Alfornio. His five step grandchildren include Sheena and Justin Brown, Bradley Leninger, and Kevin and Quinn Jurgens. His sisters Violet Jane, Norma and brothers Wesley, Lonnie and Mickey also survive him as well as numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents his brothers Wendall, Virgil, Bucky and Jerry and by his sisters Idabelle, Wanda and Jackie.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, June 17 at the Mercer Creek Church (CMA) at 1407 North B. Street, Ellensburg.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in his name may be made to
of Western and Central Washington, 12721 30th Ave., Seattle, WA 98125.
Published in Daily Record from June 10 to June 16, 2009