David Mott, 89, of Hayward-Bass Lake, Wisconsin, died Saturday at Hayward Area Memorial Hospital, after complications from a recent surgery.
David Harcourt Mott was born in Rockford, Illinois, the son of Eva Anna Mott (nee Arnquist) and John Harcourt Mott. He graduated from Rockford East High School in 1948, and then attended Beloit College, joining Sigma Chi Fraternity, and graduating in 1952 with a major in economics. At that time, automotive speed was his passion — he helped build racecars, worked the pits and sometimes raced at Elkhart Lake and other tracks nearby. He also founded Auto Imports car dealership with fellow enthusiast John Schmidt.
Sometime later, he met Carol Carter on a blind date, and married her on Sept. 20, 1958. They settled in Rockford, where he returned to the family business, Mott Brothers, a plumbing and heating wholesaler, and later managed a trucking company. While he remained excited about cars, once his friend Don Skogmo died in a crash in 1966, he stopped racing. Later a severe business downturn and better opportunities inspired a move to Scituate, Massachusetts, in 1976, where he managed Sprague Air Controls, a distributor of pneumatic automation components. In 1982, he bought Yankee Doodle Woodworkers, a manufacturer of wooden folk toys mostly sold in museum gift shops.
While he was growing up, his family had a small summer cottage on Hills Lake in Wild Rose, Wisconsin, where they swam, fished and hunted. As an adult, he brought friends and family to nearby midget car races on summer evenings. While successful on the East Coast, those warm memories beckoned, and he and Carol returned, building a house on Lac Court Oreilles in 1989. He moved his toy business to a shop in Hayward; he sold out and retired about 2008.
David was civic-minded. In Scituate he chaired the Recreation Commission, hiring lifeguards for the beaches. After a close cousin was debilitated by a stroke, Dave fell into Fishing Has No Boundaries, where he organized the bait for many years. He was also involved with the Hayward Chamber of Commerce (which promotes the Birkie cross-country ski race). For the past 10 years, he volunteered for Hayward Meals on Wheels. He belonged to Hayward United Methodist Church, where he and Carol had many friends; he was an usher, the chief money counter, a trustee, and helped maintained the building and grounds.
David was an avid hunter and fisherman his entire life; until his vision failed at the very end, he often shot trap at the Hayward Rod and Gun Club. He was a staunch Republican, and supported conservation causes such as Ducks Unlimited.
Carol, his devoted and loving wife of 60 years, passed away on January 23rd. He was heartbroken. His parents and sister, Marcia Sprague, also preceded him in death.
He is survived by his sons, Peter Mott (Elizabeth Pelcyger) of Washington, D.C., and Andrew Mott (Laurie) of Beverly, Massachusetts; and by grandchildren, Eric, Ivan, Theodore, Beatrice and Mathilda.
On Sunday, Aug. 18, at 2:30 p.m. there will be a funeral service at Hayward United Methodist Church. A gathering will be held from 1:30 p.m. until the hour of the service. Interment will follow in Greenwood Cemetery in Hayward. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to his church.
Online condolences may be shared at www.bratley-nelsonchapels.com.