David Russell McCallister, 87


DEL NORTE— David Russell McCallister was born April 21, 1930 in Del Norte, Colo. to Vernon Cook McCallister, Sr. and Sylvia Irene Spangler. He departed on Thursday, July 13, 2017. 

Dave lived his life in Del Norte, graduating from Del Norte High School and beginning his career as parts manager for the Del Norte Motor Company, owned by his father, Vern, Sr. Everyone who ordered parts for their Ford vehicle remarked about his knowledge of parts and their numbers. 

Dave loved children, and his first commitment was as a father to his family. He enjoyed flying, building with his brother a T-Craft in a family barn, then upgrading to a Cessna 172, then Bellanca. He enjoyed flying for nearly 40 years and could be seen most evenings and weekends “dipping his wings” over the Valley. He enjoyed dancing and could be found most Saturday evenings at “Boogies.”

He loved the mountains, exploring with his family the numerous mining and logging trails of southern Colorado in his 1950’s Willy Jeep. Before owning the WWII Willy’s Jeep, he explored with a 1940s flatbed truck. He was an expert ice skater and was admired for his hockey skills. You would see Dave with his family playing hockey most weekends on the upper Rio Grande River.

The family farm was located North of Del Norte – complete with alfalfa, a large garden, milk cows (Dotsy and Daisy - which he sometimes “cussed” when the cows knocked over the milk bucket), heifer, chickens and several sheep.  In his later years, he enjoyed watching over a number of cats.  The last cat was named, “Tiger”, who would unexpectedly take a swipe at anyone nearby. Those who knew him, expressed that he was a “kind,” “gentle” man.

Dave is survived by his son, Dave Jr. (Linda Anderson) of Anchorage Alaska; Lynnea Cook of Del Norte; Carol McCallister (Steve Post) of Colorado Springs; two brothers, Don of Del Norte, and Vern, Jr. of South Fork; eight grandchildren and 24 great grandchildren. We will miss Dad, but know that he has “dipped his wing” on his final flight to be re-united with his parents. 

A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Saturday, March 24, at 10 a.m. at the Pioneer United Presbyterian Church 630 Spruce, Del Norte. To leave online condolences, tributes and remarks for Dave's family, please visit www.RogersFunerals.com.

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