Santa Clara Funeral & Cremation Service
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San Jose, CA 95128
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Celebration of Life
Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020
1:00 PM
The Union Hotel
Occidental, CA
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Donald B. (Don) Connell Jr.

1931 - 2019
Donald B. (Don) Connell Jr. Obituary
Donald (Don) B Connell Jr.
Dec. 13, 1931 - Sept. 28, 2019
Resident of Santa Clara
Donald (Don) B. Connell, Jr. passed away at home in Santa Clara September 28, 2019 surrounded by his loving family. He is survived by the love of his life, his wife of 67 years, Sally Ann (Bell) and their four children, Susan Anderson (husband Don), Donnie Connell (wife Kelly), Cynthia Connell Stratfull (husband Rich), and Candace Connell. He was a dedicated Papa and G-Pa to grandchildren Stacey (wife Nikki), Melissa (husband Michael), Heath, Brooke (husband Villi), Colt, and Olivia and to great-grandchildren Kyah, Addison, and Camden. He is also survived by his brother, Jack Connell, and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents, Donald and Felicita (Chiamparino) Connell and his brother, Jerry Connell.
Don was a California native; he was born in 1931 in San Francisco, the oldest of three boys. He resided in many communities around the Bay Area throughout his life, spending the most time in Occidental, Millbrae, and Santa Clara. He graduated from Tomales High School in 1949. Don and Sally married in 1952 and started their life together. Don earned his degree in accounting from the University of San Francisco in 1953 and began his career as an accountant for United Parcel Service (UPS). He held several positions at UPS over his 33.5 year tenure, before retiring in 1987.
Don had varied interests and hobbies over his lifetime. He was involved in many aspects of his children's lives, including being a Cub Scout, Youth Church and 4H Leader, Softball/baseball Coach and PTA President. He enjoyed the outdoors and camped all over California, Oregon, and Washington with his family. Don was a lifelong avid abalone diver and always enjoyed a good abalone feed. He also raised New Zealand White rabbits for over 30 years, winning many awards for Best of Breed and Show. Don loved watching sports and was a big fan of the San Francisco Giants and 49ers. Some of his other hobbies included photography, vegetable gardening, beekeeping and growing holly.
Don served his community by regularly donating blood to Irwin Memorial Blood Bank and volunteering with the Occidental Fire Department, where he was affectionately nicknamed "Pumper."
In retirement, he had lots of time to spoil his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He also kept busy by taking photography and fitness classes at Santa Rosa Junior College and, after moving to Santa Clara, taking adaptive PE classes at DeAnza Junior College.
The family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to his caregivers, Teu Lasike and Mayeth Laxamana, for their loving care and adoration of him over the past year.
A celebration of Don's life will be held at 1pm on January 18, 2020, at The Union Hotel in Occidental, CA.

View the online memorial for Donald (Don) B Connell Jr.
Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Oct. 11, 2019
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