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CARMEL - John Michael Montana was born in Salinas on July 18, 1942. He passed away suddenly on November 13, 2012 at 70 years of age. Michael was raised in Salinas by his mother Sippia Kimberlin Montana. Even at a young age, he valued hard work and discipline, using money saved from his paper route to help his mom go to beauty school. As a young man he worked his way up from a retail clerk to a successful buyer, working for companies including Joseph Magnin's and Etienne Aigner. He moved back to Monterey County in 1979, settling in Carmel, where he has lived for the past 33 years. In that time he has owned a number of successful retail stores in Carmel and Monterey; his first store was Michael's Leather Classics, which later became The Carmel Footstop, and ultimately The Rockport Shop. Inspired by their honeymoon in Germany, Michael and his wife Carol opened Kris Kringle of Carmel in 1984, a year-round Christmas shop now celebrating its 29th season.
Michael loved LIFE. In his youth he was competitive in many sports including swimming, running, football, and tennis, trading these in for golf in his later years. A skilled card player, he excelled at both gin rummy and poker. He was a member for many years at both Quail Lodge and Monterey Peninsula Country Club. Michael loved to travel - his trips include Hawaii, Europe, and China. He took great pride in serving as the Foreman of the Monterey County Grand Jury from 1984 to 1985 and recently enjoyed volunteering for a program called CHOICES.
While Michael was a successful man in many areas - his business, his hobbies, his travels - all these achievements paled in comparison to the love and pride he had for his family. He is survived by his beloved wife of 29 years, Carol; his children, Robin (Joe) Montana, Anthony (Natasha) Montana, Tiffany (Reno) DiTullio, and Megan (George) Goebel; his grandchildren, Brittney (Garrett) Bush, Courtney (Han) Krebs, Michael Anthony, Maddison, Mayce, Reno Jacob, and Emmie; his great granddaughters, Malayna and Annika; his brothers-in-law and their families, Larry Prince, Steve (Jean) Prince, Ryan and Adam.
A Celebration of Life will take place for friends and family on Sunday, November 18 at 1:00 pm, at the Del Monte Beach House, 285 Figueroa by Fisherman's Wharf #2, in Monterey. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to one of these two charities: The
; The First Tee of Monterey County. If you would like to contact the family with a story or supportive words, please email your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org
Published in The Salinas Californian on November 17, 2012