Donald Woodrow Darling Jr. of Loveland, Colorado, passed away Sept. 1, 2017 after a long illness. He was 78. Don was born in Sonora to Donald W. Darling Sr. and Veta A. (Proctor) Darling on Dec. 18, 1938. He graduated from Sonora High School in 1956. After high school, he joined the Air Force where he worked as a radio operator intercepting Morse code in Anchorage, Alaska, during the height of the Cold War.
During his last year in Alaska, Don attended a Halloween party where he met the love of his life, Loree (Harrod). Two months later, he proposed to Loree at a New Year's Eve party, and they were married in Sonora five months later, on June 3, 1960. They were married for 49 years until her death in 2009.
After their marriage, Don and Loree moved to San Jose. During the 1960s, Don worked for Westinghouse while attending Foothill Junior College in Los Altos Hills. After graduation from Foothill, he worked as a draftsman for a variety of companies in the aerospace industry, including Link, a division of Singer, where he helped design flight simulators.
In 1972, Don moved his family to Greeley, Colorado, and began a new chapter of his life. While working as an architectural draftsman, he started his own business, Darling Design and Drafting, and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Northern Colorado. In the mid-1970s he accepted a position as a drafting instructor at Aims Community College in Greeley. He taught at Aims for the next 20 years, and then moved to Rawlins, Wyoming, where he taught at the Carbon County Higher Educational Center alongside Loree until he retired in 2001.
Six months after his retirement, Don suffered a stroke and he and Loree moved to Loveland, Colorado, to be close to their children. His interests included woodworking, fishing, genealogy, reading and following his favorite sports teams, the Rockies, Nuggets and Broncos.
Don was preceded in death by his wife Loree; and his parents, Don and Veta Darling.
He is survived by his brother, Bob Darling (Joan), of Long Barn; his daughter, Leah Roberts (Marvin), of Loveland, Colorado; his son, James Darling, of Lakewood, Colorado; and his grandchildren, Christina and John Roberts.
A memorial will be held at 11 a.m. Nov. 4, 2017, at Good Shepherd Church in Loveland. Please visit www.resthavencolorado.com for online condolences.