Donald James Cote was born to Albert and Alma Cote, in Bovey Minnesota, on April 25, 1933. He was the last of 5 children. The family moved to Yakima, Washington in 1947.
Don attended Marquette High School and graduated in 1951. Shortly after graduation, he enlisted into the U.S. Coast Guard and while in the Coast Guard, he was married to Betty Bauer.
After the Coast Guard, Don worked for Brimmer Tire Shop, in Yakima, for 5 years. He then went to work for Associated Grocers in the truck shop. In 1970, he then went to work for the Noel Corporation and worked in the truck shop and then drove semi’s transporting soda pop and a sugar tanker until his retirement in 1995.
From a young age, Don was an avid outdoorsman and enjoyed hunting and fishing. His stories about growing up in Minnesota and fishing and hunting with his brother, Al, were very entertaining. Both boys would help the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe harvest the wild rice from the 5 lakes that were around their home. Later in life, his favorite fishing times were with his brother Al, in Alaska and Canada.
Don was an accomplished mechanic that could fix just about everything that was put in front of him. His fall wine making from Concord grapes was major undertaking that involved an old oak barrel that took several days to swell the staves to become watertight. The entire family helped with the grape crushing using an antique wooden crusher.
The Cote family get togethers were a special time for Don. Nobody ever walked away hungry from a Cote function. He was a loving father, grandfather and great grandfather. His comment about being a grandfather was “awesome”.
Don was a devout Catholic and attended church every week until the COVID pandemic happened. Even then he participated in Mass on his television every week.
He is survived by his children, Stephen Cote, wife Debbie of Yakima, Linda Thunberg, husband Mark of Kent and LeeAnna Hayes, husband John of Issaquah. Also, his sister June Ulrich Skog of Seattle and brother Albert Cote of Yakima. Don was blessed to have 5 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren.
He was proceeded in death by his 2 sisters Loraine and Elsymae Cote and his son Paul Cote.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Greater Northwest chapter of the MS Society. Address is 192 Nickerson St. Ste 100, Seattle, WA 98109.
Viewing will be at Edline & Yahn Funeral Chapel from 9:00am – noon on July 22nd. Address is 27221 156th Ave. SE, Kent. Following the viewing, Mass will be held, beginning at 1:00pm, at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. Address is 25810 156th Ave. SE, Covington. Interment will be at Tahoma National Cemetery at a later date.
Reception following at the Funeral Home.
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