Donald Roger Pinkham
He passed away peacefully on Oct. 29 at his home in Exeter at the age of 88.
Donald was born on April 15, 1924 to Eben F. Pinkham and Josephine (Brundage) Pinkham both descendants of early pioneer families in the Exeter and Farmersville area.
While attending elementary school, Don developed interests in stamp and coin collecting along with photography which was a passion in his retirement years. He graduated from E.U.H.S. in 1942. His college education at U.C. Berkeley was interrupted when he received orders for duty in the U.S. Army Air Corps. He studied both at Reed College and Yale University to become a communication officer. He often said the one good thing about Yale was the wonderful music provided by the Glen Miller Band. He was commissioned a 2nd Lt. in the Air Corps and sent to India where he was stationed until the end of WW II. When he returned, Don continued his education at U.C. Davis in 1948 receiving a B.S. degree with highest honors in Plant Science from the College of Agriculture.
In May of 1952, Don married Helen Walter whose parents were also established in the growing, packing, and shipping of Emperor Grapes. Don joined his father in the fruit business as E.F. Pinkham and Son then at this time in his life his main interest centered around the family fruit business and raising a family of his own. When his son Chuck, and two daughters, Janet and Marilyn started elementary school at Venice Hill Preparatory School in Exeter, he served on this board for a number of years; also, he was a trustee of the EUHS District Board from 1967 through 1975.
One of Don’s lifelong passions was Mineral King. Mineral King, and its cabin community had always been a summer retreat for Don even as a child, so when the Mineral King Preservation Society was envisioned, he served both as president and treasurer.
Although ranching was his vocation, he changed mid-stream and was a stock broker for Dean Witter Reynolds in Visalia, for 30 years. Civic organizations he participated in included; Exeter Veterans Memorial District Bldg. (from inception to completion), Exeter Kiwanis Club, and the American Legion. He served as treasurer for the Tulare County Historical Society.
Don and Helen loved to travel to Europe through the wine regions of France, Germany and Italy which re-united Don once more with his camera. The study of viticulture and the making of fine wine spurred “Wines of the World” a retail business that Don opened in August of 1978 with European and later California selections.
In his retirement years he pursued photography with a passion venturing into more complex cameras and attending photo workshops to improve his study of composition and color and light.
Don is survived by his wife, Helen; his son, Chuck Pinkham (wife Lindsay); two daughters, Janet Kuhn and Marilyn Alltucker (husband Mike); grandchildren, Stephen and Veronica Pinkham; brother-in-law, Robert C. Walter, Jr.; and nephew, Cal Walter of Exeter.
Donations in honor of Don may be made to Kaweah Delta Hospice, 900 W. Oak Ave, Visalia 93291 or the Alzheimer’s Foundation, alzfdn.org
Condolences can be made at www.smithfamilychapel.com
Arrangements under the direction of Smith Family Chapel, Exeter.