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Sandy Journal

Sandy resident Don Kirk celebrates 105 years of well-lived life

Dec 10, 2018 04:14PM ● By Heather Lawrence

Don Kirk in a photo showing five of the six living generations in his family. (Margaret Nuttall/Cedarwood of Sandy)

By Heather Lawrence | [email protected]

Don Kirk of Sandy celebrated a very special birthday when he turned 105 years old on Oct. 28. 

A party, which was held the next day at Kirk’s assisted living center, Cedarwood of Sandy, on Oct. 29, included residents, family members, a letter from the governor, Kirk’s favorite meal and birthday cake. 

Kirk said family is one of the most important things to him. One of the high points of his life was marrying his wife Olive. Though Olive passed away in 1994, many of his family members were at the celebration to help him bring in another year. 

He has quite the progeny: seven children, 37 grandchildren, 99 great-grandchildren, 55 great-great-grandchildren and one great-great-great-grandchild.

Kirk spent his professional life as a credit manager with Fuller Paints. For work, he lived in the San Francisco and Boise areas, and then finally the family came back to the Salt Lake area where they settled. 

But his real passion? Dancing. He met his wife at a dance at Saltair and loves to dance, “especially the rumba, waltz and tango,” said Margaret Nuttall, sales director of Cedarwood at Sandy. “Cedarwood has a dance each month, and though he’s now using a wheelchair, he loves to come down to the dances. If someone helps him stand up, he even tries a move or two.” 

Nuttall wanted to make sure that Kirk’s party would be special. “We made a really big deal of it. We invited all the residents and all of Mr. Kirk’s family. We had a birthday cake and arranged the residents’ menu that day so that everyone could enjoy Don’s favorite meal, which is Malibu chicken and asparagus,” Nuttall said. 

The celebration also included a toast to Kirk with sparkling cider and a buffet of hors d'oeuvres. Governor Gary Herbert sent Kirk a letter which congratulated him on a “remarkable” birthday. 

Herbert summed up the feelings of many when he wrote, “We thank you for all the good you have done for Utah and wish you continued health and happiness for many more years to come.”