Donald Chester St. Germain
April 10, 1924 – December 11, 2020
Donald Chester St. Germain passed away on December 11, 2020 at the age of 96. He was born and raised in Kenosha, Wisconsin by his loving parents Chet and Dorothy. Don joined the Marine Corps in 1942 and became a radio technician. He served his country in both WW2 and the Korean War. Don was a Communications Officer in the Marine Corps until his honorable discharge as a Major after 24 years of service. He moved his family from Hawaii to San Diego in 1964 where he lived with his wife Rosemary and his children Nikki, Donald and Ronald. He worked for the County of San Diego until his retirement. He was preceded in death by his wife of over 50 years Rosemary. In 1978 his son Donald died in the PSA airline crash at North Park and in 2005 his daughter Nikki passed away. He is survived by his son Ronald, his grandchildren Douglas Arthur and Lauren Arthur Yates, his son-in-law David Jackson and his nephews and niece Bruce, Keith and Germaine Griffiths.
Don’s wonderful sense of humor, his kindness to others and his many stories of a long and interesting life will be missed. After surviving a heart attack and cancer surgery, he received a button that read “I’ve survived damned near everything.” And he did so with honor, dignity and love.
Donald Chester St. Germain
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January 1, 2021
I grew up across the street from Don and his family. In several ways my family shared similar life experiences. Don was a very kind and gentle man, and I’ll miss his singing while puttering around in his garage.
God bless you Mr. St. Germain!
. Ray and Tish
December 25, 2020
Uncle Don, Aunt Rosemary and the entire St. Germain family are very special to me. When I first came to San Diego as a college student in 1974, they took me into their home for a month as a I got settled. Later, after I married Heidi and had our daughter Zoe, they would would invite us over to special Christmas dinners--we felt like royalty. We still have the giant stuffed animals Don gave to Zoe when she was a youngster.
For many years in the 70's and 80's, the Griffiths and St. Germain's would all come together for a Mother's Day beach party, at Ski Beach in Mission Bay, complete with rides on Bruce's catamaran. Thanksgivings were were also special holidays when families and friends all came together at Bruce's house. As Germaine said, Uncle Don was a storyteller who mesmerized the kids.
Germaine and I had a final visit with Uncle Don before the pandemic and were able to communicate with him by writing questions on my iPad--his hearing wasn't so good but he could read! We had a great visit, and he was his usual genial, funny genuine self. Despite the many tragedies in his life, he soldiered on, always making the best of things.
My Uncle Don has a special place in my heart, and I will be inspired by him the rest of my life.
December 24, 2020
I loved Uncle Don and I felt loved by him. Throughout the years he supported me in many ways. He came to my home to be my "handy man" when I needed help. He listened to me and praised me and gave me confidence. He was good to my boys and gave them envelopes with cute drawings on them with a little treat inside. Although I could not find the photo, I have a clear picture of Uncle Don rounding up our kids at Bruce and Gail's to them stories. I never knew what those stories were about, but the kids were clearly under his spell as he wound a good tale! Don gave me a very special gift one year that I will treasure always.
I would like to live out my days as he did--with a smile and a story--but mostly with a grateful heart, which he sustained always, even through times of great personal sorrow and loss. I will miss our visits and remember him dearly.
December 23, 2020
Our Uncle Donald has been a fixture in my life for 73 years. Always a smile and always a good story. In 1969 as a young US Coast Guard Ensign on my way to report aboard my first ship (serving in Viet Nam). I was flying from California and had a weekend of liberty. I flew to see Don and Rosemary on PSA and they hosted a wonderful weekend. As a result I fell in love with SD and 4 years later requested a transfer here. I lived with Don and Rosemary after arriving and their hospitality and generosity is the primary reason all of us Griffiths are here. We’ll miss you Uncle Don.