In Loving Memory
Michael Dale Dunham
January 4, 1944 – May 18, 2013
“A heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others.”
A lifelong Walla Walla resident. Michael Dunham passed away at his home May 18, 2013. surrounded by his family and close friends.
Mike attended Walla Walla area schools and Oregon State University. Sports were a huge part of Mike’s life from his youth onward, and summers were consumed with games of all kinds. He excelled at baseball and bowling but always had a special love for golf. At age 17, Mike won the Walla Walla All-City Golf Championship. He received a baseball scholarship to Oregon State University as a pitcher, and then his scholarship was transferred to golf. Mike played in the 1964 NCAA Golf Championships and found success in this tournament, ranking 6th in the nation for the long drive contest. Mike also competed for the OSU Bowling Team which won the NCAA Team Championship in 1964.
During his early post college years Mike played plenty of golf and Walla Walla Bears baseball, and raised two children as a single father to Michelle and Eric. He depended upon regular and devoted help from his parents, Shirley and Wendall! Mike also became involved in local politics, and held one term on the Walla Walla City Council. A longtime member of the Walla Walla Country Club, Mike was Club Champion in 1973, 1974 & 1995 and was President of the Club in 1995.
Mike felt the most fortunate part of his life was meeting and falling in love with Joanne Buckley. They were married April 9, 1982.
Mike, wife, Joanne and son, Eric, formed Dunham Cellars in Walla Walla in 1997. Within a short time, the winery’s growth demanded sufficient attention that Mike retired from his insurance practice to focus on growing the winery business. The winery has been a wonderful part of the Dunham family’s life and has provided many opportunities to meet new friends, to travel and to support many great causes and charities. Mike’s constant presence at the winery will be deeply missed by his loyal staff. Always a gracious host, countless friends and business associates will remember their introduction to “Mike Dunham, Walla Walla” and Mike’s uncanny ability to make people feel welcome.