Obituary: Vincent Victor Dalke
Vincent Victor Dalke passed into peace on May 3, 2018, at his home in Prescott, Arizona. Vince was born in Tracy, Minnesota, on June 22, 1941, to Dorothy and Victor Dalke.
There his parents were farmers, but Dorothy’s health required a move to a warmer climate. At six months of age, Vince and his two brothers were brought to Prescott, Arizona. The four-room house with lots of acreage welcomed two sisters during the next four years. Soon after the move, Dorothy and Victor, joined the Smoki People and brought their family of seven into an organization that gave Vince and his siblings a time of camaraderie and fun.
He attended St. Joseph’s Academy where life-long friends were made and graduated in 1960. The contagious, positive approach to life and integrity that Vince possessed were the magnets that held fast to his schoolmates. Although his dream of training as a draftsman would be placed on hold, he began working as a plumbers’ assistant the year of his graduation. During that summer he met Bonnylin Stephenson at the Kiwanis Park Dance Pavilion and they danced into each other’s hearts, temporarily. In May, 1961, they discovered one another again and saw a future together. That next year they married on December 15th at the United Methodist Church in Prescott. In late 1963 Vince and Bonnylin moved to Phoenix so he could attend the Plumbers and Pipefitters’ Local 469 apprenticeship school. There he achieved the honor of being top apprentice for the year 1965/66. During their time in Phoenix, their son, Vincent James, was born in ‘66 and their daughter, Becky Annette, in ‘69. Before the birth of their daughter, Vince began building his first project, a duplex. Tired of the heat and traveling away from home for work, Vince began his second project in 1974. This would be a home next door to his parents in Prescott. Here life had new opportunities, like traveling with the family to wonderful places all over the United States and Arizona while returning to some old traditions, like raising their own beef and gardening.
In 1977 two more adventures would begin, Dalke Glass Aft Supplies and Dalke Plumbing. Both were a success and established them within their newly growing Prescott community. While his children became busy with sports, school and exploring, as he had in the granite boulders and back roads, Vince returned to collecting, camping, learning about Native American history and entertaining friends and family. In 1984 another construction project sprouted, the building at 215 N. McCormick. This would be the home for Dalke Glass Art Supplies, with his son and nephews helping on the project. The final home for the business was a remodel at 125 S. McCormick in 1993. Still being involved with the Smoki People of Prescott, Vince was elected in 1988 to be leader, Chief Gourd Grower. This was an honor for him in a very difficult time. During that year a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis painfully began to cripple his feet and hands. Smiling through the pain until the very end, he would never succumb to limitation. Vince and Bonnylin closed their businesses, Dalke Plumbing in ‘85 and Dalke Glass Aft Supply in ‘97 and rightfully retired. Traveling became a special pleasure for the couple. They visited many countries in Europe between the years 1997 and 2006. A trip apart from these was India in 2000 with good friend Perry. Here he visited many notable sites, like the amazing Dharmasala, the home to the Dalai Lama. Being the collector he was, there were large and small items from the travels shipped home, some would be used for yet another build. In 2006, his son, Vince, now an architect, would be asked to design a house at the top of the ridge of the property. Over the next several years, he would construct a road to the top and with the help of only one helper at a time, build the beautiful home he and his wife enjoyed for his remaining years. Vince could never stop creating. He would pull inspiration from all types of material, natural and recycled. His eye caught the unusual, making stunning devil’s claw wind catchers, javelina hair earrings and many amazing pieces of jewelry. His wife, daughter and he became vendors at the Prescott Farmers Market so these items along with pecans, worms and worm castings could be shared with others. A consummate salesman, he joked, teased and engaged buyers with his conversation. His quick wit caught everyone that met him leaving, even if not with an item at least a smile or joke. This left a lasting impression even after his grandson, Vincent, and his wife, Gabriella, moved up to help when he could no longer attend. His life was full and exciting and he always had a generous heart. Vince never met a stranger and enjoyed conversation with all those that needed a friend. He had a laugh that would infect you even at your lowest. His eyes would twinkle with mischief and you knew something was up his sleeve; almost always a joke. He worked hard and enjoyed life even more; passing this onto his lineage was no strange coincidence.
His son, Vincent James, became an architect, fulfilling his father’s dreams of designing buildings. This was a passion they shared, giving advice and support to each other. His daughter, Becky Annette, provided music that filled her father with joy throughout his life and into his final moments. Her care for him in his prolonged illness brought comfort and friendship they forever share. Vince was so happy that his grandson, Vincent Juan, wanted to live with his wife on their property, and they moved into the house that he had built in 1974. Together they shared jokes and his pride would show when seeing Vincent perform stand-up comedy. Vince felt that he and his grandson, Matthew Tomas, were like two peas in a pod. They loved to joke, talk about baseball and everything in between. When Matt received a scholarship to play baseball in college, Vince could not have been prouder. Vince was a kid in constant motion, curious and fun-loving. He always felt lucky to have experienced the ever-changing history and beauty of Prescott. It is with this mind that he made his surroundings his own during the 76 years of life on the Dalke property. He was always exploring while learning about the world and his connection therein. Vince was a wonderful father, grandfather and friend, but as a husband, he excelled. His love for Bonnylin never wavered, finding joy just holding her hand. He was her guide, teacher and lover. Life was good and they made each other so completely happy. Vince is survived by his wife, Bonnylin; his daughter, Becky Annette; his son, Vincent James; and grandson, Vincent Juan (Gabriella) and Matthew Tomas; his sisters, Rita Crawford and Catherine Hartin; and many nieces and nephews. Vince was preceded in death by parents, Victor Lawrence and Dorothy Elmire (Krueger) Dalke; and his brothers, Denis R. Dalke and Carter L. Dalke. There will be a Celebration of Life, on his birthday, June 22, at the Dalke home property, from, 3-8 p.m. For more information contact the family at firstname.lastname@example.org. Arrangements entrusted to Hampton Funeral Home.
Information provided by survivors.