A gentle soul, Douglas Hawks, passed away on December 16, 2020 in Long Beach, CA from cancer. He was surrounded by family and love at the time of his passing. Doug, motivated by his overwhelming love for his family, spent the last two years putting forward extreme effort to give them more time with him. He faced his cancer fight with more dignity, grace and positive outlook than often even seemed humanly possible.
Doug was born in Billings, Montana in February, 1949 to Donard and Ruby Hawks with an outside temperature of 50 degrees below zero (described by Doug as being years before global warming). His dad's job with the federal government next moved them next to Ephrata, Washington. He grew up fishing on the peninsula on the Puget Sound, along with many other adventures that cemented his love for the outdoors from an early age. The family next moved to the Sacramento, CA area. Doug completed his high school years there playing many varsity sports, yet focused solely on baseball after a minor injury. His team won the state championship in the American Legion League and Doug earned a baseball scholarship to UC Davis. Prior to accepting he had developed such a fondness for tennis, he declined the scholarship. Instead, Doug paid his way through UC Davis (and summer courses at CAL Berkeley) by working multiple summer jobs and living in fraternity or low rent campus housing with many roommates.
Doug remained in Northern California until his job with Coca-Cola offered him a promotion in Orange County. He would say it was a difficult choice as he saw himself as permanently living up north, and therefore, had the fairly customary negative view of living in Southern California. His opinion quickly changed as he was greeted with sunshine, coastal views and so much in the area to love.
After being a professional photographer for several years, Doug focused his creativity toward marketing in the financial services/ technology industry. He flourished as an executive in this field for the rest of his career. His proud point was combining his vast business and creative talents and, together with Cheri, founding All1Team, Inc. Doug thoroughly enjoyed working with the dedicated team, more appropriately described as family as opposed to employees, until the company was sold and he retired in May 2016.
During his years in business, Doug never strayed from his love of photography. He decided to combine this passion with his endearment for his home city of Long Beach and in 2005 published a book, Black and White Long Beach. Doug would also spend time sharing photography lessons and tips to family members as they eagerly absorbed all he had to offer.
Doug Hawks was truly an original, a talent with a mind like no other. It would be very hard to find someone with as much enthusiasm for life as him. Doug inspired all those fortunate enough to meet or know him. He had such a natural way of sharing his love for life with others and opening their eyes, minds and hearts. He could make you laugh when you would least expect it. He motivated all of us to welcome a brighter perspective on life and savor every moment. Although it is difficult to limit, here are a few pointers Doug would be proud to share –
Be passionate about things in life and support others in their passions; Family is always a priority; Be generous with your love; Quality is important and always matters; Try to make time to read a book; A true sports fan supports their team in the good and the rough years (forever a San Francisco 49er fan); Always make advance dinner reservations; Music will always sound best and most pure in vinyl and in cooking, there is no such thing as too much butter.
Doug will be sorely missed and is survived by his wife, Cheri, children, Jenn (Randy), Melissa, Conor and Tiffany; brother, Steve; Sister, Jeanene; goddaughters, Elise, Melissa and Cassandra; grandchildren, Ella, Lauren, Grant, LJ, MJ, Savannah, Harper, Victor, Lucy, Ruben and Javi; many nieces and nephews and an immense number of loving friends and neighbors.
Doug has left a gaping hole in our lives with his departure and we look to find comfort in knowing a small piece of him will live on, be carried around and expressed by so many that have known and love him.
In Doug's memory, these charities are being supported by the family – Conquer Cancer (www.conquer.org
) and Arts Council for Long Beach (www.artslb.org
Published by Gazette Newspapers from Jan. 7 to Jan. 15, 2021.