Donald E. Minkoff, 81, passed away at is home in Newport Beach surrounded by his family Sept. 15, 2010, after a short illness. He was born March 4, 1929, in Los Angeles.
Don spent his early years in Alhambra and graduated from Alhambra High School. He met and married his wife of 57 years, Erna, the love of his life. They settled in Newport Beach in 1971 where they raised their three children, Catherine, Debra and Mark.
Don initially joined the Army Reserve and subsequently served in the United States Air Force as a member of the Air Police. He had many passions in life that emerged as different aspects of his long and varied career. He spent his early years in sales and marketing and enjoyed a lifelong love of automobiles. A highlight was a business he formed importing Mercedes Benz automobiles from Germany, giving him and Erna the opportunity to travel frequently to Europe. They toured the Mercedes Benz factory in Stuttgart as well as other European locales they came to love. He restored and showed cars in the classic car circuit winning numerous awards and making many long time friends and acquaintances who shared this interest. Don also developed a passion for real estate development, construction and management and was personally and enthusiastically involved in all aspects of this work. He chose never to retire.
He valued the many friendships he developed over the years as he worked out early every morning with a special group of friends at the Newport Beach Athletic Club.
He actively supported the California Highway Patrol 11-99 Foundation, which is devoted to the welfare of CHP officers and their families and was a member of the Mercedes Benz Gull Wing Club and owned and showed his 1957 300SL Gull Wing at numerous events.
Don is survived by his wife, Erna; son, Mark Minkoff and his wife, Sherry, of Coto de Caza, and granddaughter, Natasha Minkoff; daughter, Debra Kinder, of Laguna Beach, and grandchildren, Megan, Ashley, Justin and Brittany Forsdick, and great grandchildren Jada and Jordyn Forsdick. Daughter Catherine preceded him in death.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations in Donald E. Minkoff’s memory be sent to the California Highway Patrol 11-99 Foundation, 2244 North State College Blvd., Fullerton, CA 92831, Hoag Hospital, One Hoag Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92658-6100 or Child Help, 15757 No. 78th St., No. B, Scottsdale, AZ 85260-1629
Services will be at 10:30 a.m. Sept. 20, 2010, at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church, 2046 Mar Vista Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660.