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Donald Manes

April 14, 1941 ~ January 18, 2024 (age 82) 82 Years Old

Donald Manes Obituary

Donald "Don" was an engineer and he always liked saying that. Don passed away on January 18, 2024. He was the first son of Violet and Norman Manes and was born in a small farmhouse in Camden County, Missouri. His brother Charles Franklin Manes was born 4 years later in Long Beach, California. Don is survived by the love of his life Patricia Manes and his brother Charles and his family.

Don graduated from Dos Palos High School in 1959. He then went on to graduate from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1963 with a BS in mechanical engineering. Don joined the United States Air Force completing OCS at Lackland Air Force Base and then completed the Aircraft Maintenance Course at Chanute Air Force Base and was assigned as an Aircraft Maintenance Officer at England AFB in Alexandria, LA. In 1965 he was at Clark AFB in the Philippines and then later that year the entire 3rd Tactical Fighter Wing moved to Bien Hoa, Vietnam. He received an Air Force Commendation medal and a Bronze Star for outstanding achievement and meritorious service in Vietnam. Returning to the States Don joined the 9th Strat Recon Wing at Beale AFB. Don was a flight line maintenance officer with the crews flying the SR71 Blackbird. He experienced many interesting events with the blackbird.

Leaving the Air Force in 1969 Don joined the Fluor Corporation in Los Angeles as a mechanical engineer. Working on various engineering and construction projects around the world. He spent five years working on the design and construction of the Trans Alaskan Pipeline Project. Fluor assignments took him to Los Angeles, Irvine, Alaska, England (Manchester), New Mexico, New Jersey and North Dakota. Don loved flying and obtained a private pilot's license and for a few owned his own plane (62 Whiskey). In 1976 he flew to Alaska and enjoyed flying the local area. One other pastime was playing golf with friends. Never much good at hitting the white ball, he just loved being with his friends.

After retirement in 1997 Don and Patricia spent 8 years traveling the United States in a motorhome. He liked to say they went around the States 3 or 4 times from the top to the bottom. One trip went from New Brunswick in Canada via IS 95 and Highway 1 to Key West, Florida. What a trip.

When Don and Trisha settled down, they chose Chowchilla, CA to build their home which was completed in 2008 and has been their home since. Being back in the area he had the opportunity to care for his mother in her waning years. It was a good time for both him and his mother because he had been gone from home since graduating from high school with occasional visits. Mom passed away in 2017 at 98 years.

Don loved Yosemite and you might hear his voice there if you listen really close. He had a good run at life.

   

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