Don Drake, 87, a longtime resident and pioneer in Grand County, passed away on Sept. 8. Don was born in Oak Creek, on Sept. 22, 1925, and moved to the Grand Lake area in 1932. Don was Grand County’s first year-round realtor and established Don Drake Realty Company in Winter Park in 1962. He was active in the Grand County Board of Realtors and was the Board’s first elected president. Don was the principal developer of several Fraser Valley residential and commercial subdivisions including Frosty Acres, Grand Country Estates, Sunset Ridge, Kings Crossing Solar Townhomes, and Forest Meadows, the site of the first Safeway store in Fraser.
Don served his country with the U.S. Army Air Corps during WWII in Guam and the Philippines. He is a graduate of the University of Denver with a degree in Business Administration and Hotel and Restaurant Management. Don was a volunteer fireman in Grand Lake and Hideaway Park and a charter member of the Fraser River Valley Lions Club. Don enjoyed sailing, skiing, golf and travel.
Don’s wife Betty of 62 years preceded him in death on April 7, 2013. Don is survived by his sister June of Durango, four children and grandchildren, Ron and Susan Drake from Arroyo Grande, Calif., and their sons JB and Lee; Lynn and Wim Huizing from Arvada, and their daughters Anjolie, Brittany and Kerri; Kirk and Shelley Drake from Venice Beach, Calif; and Jenny and Greg Harris from Fraser, and their daughters Rochelle and Stacy. Don is also survived by five great grandchildren. Don is remembered by his loving family for his vision, constant optimism, tenacity and accomplishments. Together with his wife Betty, Don created a loving home and instilled a love of family which will never die.
Memorial services for Don will be held at Covenant Village Chapel, 9221 Wadsworth Parkway, in Westminster at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 12, and in Fraser at the Fraser historic church, 107 Eisenhower Drive at 2 PM on Sunday, Oct. 13.