Lifelong Montesano resident Donald C. (Donnie) Reams, 79, passed away on Oct. 8, 2017, surrounded by his family at Tacoma General Hospital. He was born on Oct. 2, 1938, to Ted and Zelma Hammill at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Aberdeen, Wash.
Donnie was raised in Montesano and attended Montesano High School. In his late high school years, he met the love of his life, Patricia Ann Sackrider (Pat). Shortly after he graduated from high school, he married his sweetheart on Sept. 4, 1959. They just celebrated their 58th wedding anniversary. After getting married, Donnie joined the United States Navy and served for four years before he was honorably discharged. After being in the service, he started school to become a carpenter and began his lifelong career in carpentry. He built numerous houses around the Grays Harbor area. During being a busy carpenter and wonderful husband, Donnie and his wife Pat would bring two beautiful girls into the world. First, Dawn Renee in 1960 and then Julie in 1962. Their family was complete and many memories were to come and many were made. When Donnie retired from being a carpenter, he took jobs at both the Montesano School District and Grays Harbor College. First, for the Montesano School District, where he was head of the maintenance department for several years and second, at Grays Harbor College, where again he was a part of the maintenance team for a few years. He fully retired after working for both the school and college, and began to enjoy his family and friends.
Donnie loved to be outdoors. He loved to hunt, fish, clam dig, and berry pick. When his daughters were young, he got to coach his favorite sport, fast pitch, for many years. He became a role model for many young girls through his years of coaching. Once he was retired, his hobbies were to go holiday shopping with his daughter Dawn, work on the four classic Ford Mustangs he bought and restored with his daughter Julie, spend time and attend all the events that his grandchildren were a part of, spend ample time with his loving wife Pat, and tinker around his house in the flower beds and yard.
Donnie was a very kind and gentle person. He loved and lived for his family and would give anything to help another person. Throughout his life, he had touched so many people and has made a difference in a lot of lives of others. He would always say “I’m perfect” when asked how he was, and that definitely was not a lie. He was perfect.
Donnie is survived by his wife, Pat Reams of Montesano; his sister, JoAnn Latch of Montesano; his daughter, Julie Reams of Montesano; his son-in-law, Byron Baker (Lori) of Elma; his three grandchildren, Ryan Baker (Georgia) of McCleary, Brennan Baker of Elma, and Jessica Everson (Daniel) of Elma; his great-grandson Morrison Baker of McCleary; his brother-in-laws, Ronnie Sackrider of Montesano and Steve Sackrider (Shari) of Elma; and numerous uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins. He is preceded in death by his father Ted Hammill, his mother Zelma Hammill, and his daughter Dawn Baker.
There will be a private graveside service at Wynoochee Cemetery. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, you can donate to the American Cancer Society, St. Jude’s Hospital, and the Montesano Fire Department.