David Fredric Monschke (Bop), age 78, passed away at Shelter Cove CA on December 7, 2018. David, affectionately known by family and friends as Bopa or Bop, had been fighting a combination of Parkinson’s disease and melanoma cancer; he was with his wife and family when he passed.
David was born July 12, 1940, in Morton, Washington, the second of five children born to David and Peg Monschke. In 1949, his family who were in the timber industry, moved to Humboldt County California where David spent the remainder of his childhood and graduated from South Fork High School. His family lost their home in Myers Flat during the 1955 flood which was seen with a mix of tragedy and awe through David’s eyes.
After graduating from South Fork High in 1958 David attended community college before landing at Humboldt State. An adventurous time in David’s life, he enjoyed expanding his intellectual horizons and could often be found surfing and singing at beach parties on the CA coast. It was while at Humboldt that he met his future wife Valerie Van Pelt. David and Valerie were married on April 27th 1968 and shared their 50th wedding anniversary in 2018. David and Valerie moved to Garberville, CA where they had their first son Jonathan.
In the early 70s the Monschke’s could be found traveling the Northwest with friends and family contracting and building trails for the newly formed wilderness areas. David had built a redwood camper on a new Chevy truck that the family lived in while traveling. It was while building a trail that David and Valerie fell in love with the town of Joseph, OR and with Jonathan approaching school age settled there in 1972. They partnered on an old saw mill and formed Joseph Forest Products. Soon after purchasing a home in 1973 Valerie gave birth to their second son Nathan and in 1976, their third son Joshua arrived; and David and Valerie gave up on trying to have daughter. In the late seventies David re-focused the company to concentrate on packaging log homes and Joseph Log Homes was born. Many of the log buildings seen in downtown Joseph today are a product of this endeavor.
During the Joseph years, David balanced a busy work schedule that often found him traveling around the west and to Japan, while being an engaged father to his three boys. The family spent weekends hiking in the mountains and floating the canyons of Eastern Oregon. David was active in the community and loved bringing a different perspective to local conversations. David was an avid lover of a variety of sports his entire life and could often be found on a tennis or basketball court. As a father, David did his best to teach the boys a strong work ethic and compassion for others while installing a healthy dose of critical thought.
In the early 90s with the slowdown of the log home market David had to seek new ways to support his family and he went back to bidding Forest Service contracts. David taught his sons, who were now spread from junior high to college, the trade and this turned out to be a great bonding time for the family; who spent the summers camping and working together. David and Valerie eventually sold the house in Joseph and moved to western Oregon. At this time David adventured about a bit doing everything from long haul trucking to brokering sail boats but eventually settled on real estate development and moved to Yachats on the Oregon Coast.
In 2009 David and Valerie came full circle and moved back to Humboldt County to be near their sons Nate and Josh as well as David’s brother Jack and sister Ruth. They built a small home in the hills amongst the redwoods and spent their time enjoying the majestic forests and beaches of Northern California.
David’s health began to seriously decline in 2018 and in December he passed away peacefully at his son Josh’s home in Shelter Cove. The Monschke family is grateful to Heart of the Redwoods Hospice, who without their expertise and compassion it would not have been possible for David to have stayed at home with his family. We will all miss David’s sense of humor, his unconditional acceptance of others, and ability to see the big picture. Always looking to take on new projects David had an ability to look outside of the box, and usually brought a different approach to any activity. David’s love and support of his family and friends was always apparent and he was ever willing to show kindness to others.
On Saturday June 15th 2018, a beach party celebrating David’s life will be held at the Shelter Cove south beach. The gathering will begin at 3:00 pm with memorial ceremony at 4:00; burgers, beer and bonfire immediately after. All who knew and miss David are invited to attend.