- 61 years old
- Date of birth: Mar 28, 1953
- Place of birth:
Duluth, Minnesota, United States
- Date of passing: Apr 20, 2014
- Place of passing:
San Diego, California, United States
Donald Douglas Hafner, 61, passed away on Sunday, April 20th, 2014, as a result of complications from surgery for pulmonary embolisms.
Don grew up in Duluth, Minnesota, graduating from East High School in 1971. Don received a BA from Miami University, and a dual MA/MBA from Claremont Graduate University. Don spent time traveling with the Merchant Marines, and lived in New York City, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, before settling and starting a family in Claremont, California. He met his wife Anna Asker, in New York and they got married on a San Francisco cable car in 1982. They have two daughters, Megan, born in 1988, and Shana, born in 1992. Every summer, Don and Anna took road trips with their daughters and eventually visited all 50 states.
As the Director of Grants and Foundation Relations, Don worked at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California, for 15 years. Don’s work reflected his passion for arts education and classical music.
In lieu of gifts, the family, in partnership with the Segerstrom Center, established the Don Hafner Memorial Fund, which will benefit projects that Don spent his life supporting. Contributions may be made online or via mail.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts
600 Town Center Dr.
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
Attn: Don Hafner Memorial Fund
"TO THE FAMILY,
FIRST I AM SOE SORRY ABOUT YOUR FATHER AND HUSBAND. TO SAY WHAT I FEEL IS TO SAY THAT DON WROTE SOME OF THE MOST INTERESTING LETTERS EVER WRITTEN. WE SO ENJOYED ALL OF YOU WHEN YOU CAME TO DALLAS AND WE SHALL ALWAYS CHERISH OUR BOTTLE OF HAFNER WINE. GOD BLESS YOU ALL. SALLY HAFNER"
"My memories of Don begin when I was a child visiting my grandparents' home in Duluth. I adored him for what I only later realized was his all-too-rare gift of making everyone in the room, including the kids, feel like they were in on the joke. I remember watching Don play shuffleboard or play piano as he talked with my grandparents & my Dad & my uncle, & the ease I felt around them, sensing so clearly how much the Hafner men were all very alike & yet so incredibly unique, & how much they made my brother Brian & I feel like we were important members of the world's best family. I vividly recall when Don first brought Anna to Duluth & how excited I was to meet her. I was in awe of the two of them: Anna was like a movie star & together they were this incredibly hip & glamorous couple with stories of life in California and music and travel and a wedding on a cable car. To a little kid, it all sounded like something out of an incredible adventure novel. It was easy for everyone in the family to see how thrilled & proud Don was to have an amazing partner in his life, a pride that expanded exponentially as he had daughters of his own. I grew older and saw Don & Anna less, but each visit is one I remember well for the laughter we shared and the love and ease I felt around them. Whenever I got the opportunity to spend time with Don, Anna, Megan, & Shana over my life I have been reminded that my family is remarkable. I'm grateful to Don for bringing them into my life, for teaching me about humor, for making me appreciate that a good dose of sarcasm or dry wit can get you through just about anything, for making me appreciate this amazing family we share, and for recognizing that life is one boundless adventure."
"Forever missed. … says it all. I remember Don in the early years being quiet and gentle, always with a twinkle in his eye and smile on his face. As reflected in the pictures…. the deep love of family was a blessed foundation and ultimate lifetime gift. The memories, travels, pictures, and heartfelt smiles when remembering favorite moments shared, will be a lasting tribute and legacy."
"Don and I worked at the Segerstrom Center for about 10 years. I counted him as a friend and always enjoyed working with him and getting together for lunches and events outside of work. Even after I left The Center I looked forward to meeting him for lunch, when he kept me updated on the latest exploits of his talented daughters and Anna. He loved his family deeply and the many trips they took together in the summers were a special source of delight for him. Don also had a unique sense of humor that never failed to tickle me. He was intelligent, opinionated, hard-working, and a dedicated lover and supporter of the arts. Though it is sad that he passed at such a young age, it is comforting to know that he had a fulfilling life and that he brought great joy and wisdom to all he touched."