On Friday, April 16, 2021, David William Brokaw, beloved brother and uncle, passed away at the age of 77.
David was born on September 17, 1943 at Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota, first child of Stewart and Claudia Brokaw. He attended schools in Bloomington, Minnesota and graduated in 1961. He joined the Navy in 1965 and was honorably discharged in 1967, having reached the rank of Photographer’s Mate, Petty Officer 3rd Class and earned a Navy Unit Commendation Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, and an Antarctica Service Medal. During his service, he participated in Operation Deep Freeze in Antarctica and assisted with the arrangements for the visit of President Lyndon B. Johnson to New Zealand in 1966. He subsequently attended St. Cloud State University in St. Cloud, Minnesota, graduating in 1970 with High Scholastic Honors, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. After graduating, he entered government service and worked for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms for his entire career, retiring in 1999.
Dave was a dedicated world-traveler, spending significant amounts of time in India, and climbing to the top of Machu Picchu. He was also a dedicated and talented hobbyist, mastering woodworking and woodturning, stained glass, painting, photography, bonsai and horticulture, and many others. He was also a multi-talented musician, a professionally trained clown and magician, and a classic car enthusiast.
He and his partner of 30 years, Steve, embarked on a retirement first to Coos Bay, Oregon, then to the rolling hills near Owingsville, Kentucky to indulge Dave’s love of horses and talent for horse-training. He got his first horse, a captured wild mustang named Ty, in 2012 just prior to their move to Kentucky. After their arrival, Dave’s generous heart and love of animals lead him to adopt a retired racehorse, Diggins, a mother-and-son pair of Rocky Mountain Horses named Candy and Cody, and an injured mule named Forgotten. He was always welcoming to friends, family, and neighbors, and was well known for his warm heart and irreverent sense of humor. He will be dearly missed by all who had the good fortune to know him.
He was preceded in death by his father Stewart and his mother Claudia, as well as his partner, Steve Montgomery. He is survived by siblings Suzanne Baker, Stewart Brokaw, and Bonnie (Mark) Scott; stepson Mark (Christine) Montgomery and their son, Eric; niece Jackie, and nephew Jared (Annie) and their two children. The family would also like to extend their deepest gratitude to Bill and Sue Ann Gay and Doug and Sylvia Crisp for their invaluable assistance both to Dave during his life, and to the family since Dave’s passing. A private gathering of family and close friends will be held to honor his memory. Should friends so choose, the family suggests memorial contributions be sent to a horse rescue organization or the charity of their choice in Dave’s honor.