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December 9, 1940 – January 7, 2021

Don was born, a proud direct descendant of the Mayflower, in Rhode Island to Edward and Rose Cook. He grew up loving the outdoors: hunting, fishing, trapping and motorcycle riding. After high school, he enlisted in the Coast Guard. At every opportunity, he would travel to the gold country of California and prospect for gold. Upon his discharge from the military, he moved to a small mining town outside of Grass Valley, CA to continue prospecting.

Soon after, he got a job in the logging industry. In 1963, he met his wife to be, Sandra Ward and in May of 1964 they welcomed their first son, Edward. A few years later, in 1970, the family moved to Strawberry, CA. Don and Sandy were blessed with their second son, David, in 1974. Don continued working in the timber industry until the early 1980’s when he started his own tree service. After many physically laborious years cutting trees, he “retired” working in finance and cell tower management.

Don was happy to spend the last 15 years of his life at the family ranch getting to know his grandkids and great-grandkids very well. He was just about as social as they come and he always had a story or a joke to tell anyone who was willing to listen. He was, in his words, “an equal opportunity offender.” Many referred to Don as the “Mayor” of the American River Canyon, having lived there for over 50 years.

Don lived life on his own terms, always. His passing is a huge loss for his family and community. He is survived by his brother- Ken, son- Ed and his wife Susan, son- David, granddaughter- Morgan and her husband Brad, granddaughter- Erika and her husband Brian, and great-grandchildren- JT, Thys, Haley, Eddie.

A celebration of life for Don will be held at the Strawberry Lodge on May 30th from 2pm-5pm. (17510 Hwy 50). Please join us and share your favorite Don Cook story or joke.

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