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Donald Edward Kirby

Resident of Modesto

Donald died on Father's Day morning, June 20, 2010. He was visiting his brother and sister-in-law when he died peacefully at their home in rural Maryland. He was 73 years old.

He was born January 12, 1937, the second eldest son of Dittman and Grace Kirby in Leavenworth, Washington. He completed his primary and secondary education in Phoenix, Arizona at Murphy's Elementary School and West Phoenix High School. He earned a Bachelor's of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Arizona, Tucson. Although he worked on numerous engineering projects, he particularly enjoyed his work with the Apollo Space Program at Cape Kennedy in Florida. In mid-life he turned his attention to investing and property renovation he continued to practice until the final days of his life. He was an avid tennis player until recently and forever a bird-watching enthusiast. He was a life-long learner and mentor to friends and family.

He will be missed by many, including a wild Scrub Jay that was a frequent visitor to his home in Modesto, CA. He leaves behind two daughters and a son: Kathleen Kirby, residing in Chico, CA; Lucinda Cook and her husband Phillip Cook of Modesto, CA; and son Kenneth Kirby of Fresno, CA. He is survived by his ex-spouse of 38 years; Marilyn Kirby; six grandchildren: Elsa Newman; Kymberly, Joshua, and Lori Kirby; and Jason and Brian Cook. He has two living brothers: Fredrick Kirby and spouse, Jean; Robert Kirby and spouse Deanna, and a deceased sister, Mary Della Kirby. There are eight nieces and nephews, and eight grand nieces and nephews.

There will be a Celebration of Life on July 24, 2010 at 11:00 a.m. at the SOS Club in Modesto.
Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on July 11, 2010
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