David Allen Farell, 79, of San Juan Capistrano, CA, passed away Sunday, December 29, 2013, after a short illness. Devoted husband, father and grandfather, he was passionate about cars, golf and Dixieland Jazz.
He is survived by his wife of 25 years, Myrna; son Todd Farell; son Matthew David Farell; granddaughter Taylor Farell; brother Jack (Barbara) Farell; and several nieces and nephews. He is also survived by his children through marriage Cindy (Laury) Smith and Brent Olson; grandchildren Shaine (Stu) Schnurman, Adam Smith, and Heather (Kelly) Jean, as well as great-grandchildren Anna Schnurman, Spencer Schnurman, Dugan Jean, Daphne Jean and Madde Jean; and brother-in-law Harold (Carol) Moe and several nieces and nephews.
Born in South Bend, IN, to Earl and Geraldine (Loehr) Farell on 4/19/34, David grew up in South Bend, IN, and graduated from Purdue with a BS in Aeronautical and Mechanical Engineering. A PFC in the Army from 1957-1958, he was stationed near Port Huron, MI, when he met his first wife, Connie Vallance, and they started their family in Dearborn, MI, in 1959.
With a 32-year career at Ford Motor Company, he specialized in Mechanical and Performance Engineering, often test-driving various models under extreme conditions in the coldest and hottest spots in the nation. He won the 1963 Nationals in Indy in D Class drag racing, and has since spent many years cheering and jeering NASCAR, Indy and local Saturday night tracks.
David loved adventure and travel, from Thailand to Dixieland Jazz Concerts on the Mississippi River and in the Caribbean, to his favorite one-a River Cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest. Another passion was flying, until shortly after getting his solo permit in New Hudson, MI, when he barely escaped death in a collision with a fuel truck whose driver didn’t see his small Cessna on the runway.
A loyal soul with a big soft heart, he was sincerely interested in the lives of his family and friends, and never missed an opportunity to share dinner and a movie out. If not on the golf course, David could be found with his Feet Fleet Walking buddies down at Dana Point Harbor, or talking cars and debating politics. Such a social animal, he was dearly loved for his kind heart, witty stories and ready helping hand. He will be deeply missed by all.
Celebration of Life will be held Saturday 1/11/14 at 1 pm at Heritage Park, 34400 Old Golden Lantern, CA 92629. Following the ceremony, everyone is invited to share memories, light refreshments and music at 2:30 pm at the Dana Point Women’s Club, formerly known as the Community House, (24642 San Juan Avenue, Dana Point, CA 92629) which is just a short distance away from Heritage Park.
The family gratefully requests that in lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to Family Assistance Ministries, 929 Calle Negocio, San Clemente, CA, www.family-assistance.org or The American Lung Association, 424 Pendleton Way, Oakland, CA, 94621, www.lung.org or your favorite charity.