David Lee “Moose Mitch” Mitchell, Sr., 59, of South Bend, IN, passed away at 1:14 p.m. Thursday, May 31, 2018 at Memorial Hospital in South Bend, IN, after a brief illness.
He was born on June 22, 1958 to Elbert and Bobbie Jean (Newton) Mitchell in Phoenix, AZ., and has lived in South Bend, IN since 1976, when he came to attend the University of Notre Dame on a full football scholarship.
David graduated in 1976 from St. Mary’s High School in Phoenix, AZ, where he held many weightlifting and track records. He was inducted into the St. Mary’s High School Hall of Fame and they retired his football jersey number “44”, the same jersey number he continued to wear at Notre Dame. David graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1980, where he majored in Economics and minored in Sociology. He played on the Notre Dame Football Team as a Fullback. David played in the 1977 Cotton Bowl where the Irish became National Champions and he was the first football player to score a touchdown wearing the “Green Jersey”. David then attended Bio Systems School for Respiratory Therapists in Phoenix, AZ, where he received his Respiratory Therapist Certificate.
David was currently employed at Memorial Hospital as a Respiratory Therapist since 1986. He also taught from 1984-1985 at the Baylor School for Boys in Chattanooga, TN. David and his wife, Dorothy were also the owners of Mitchell’s Country Care for the Elderly in South Bend from 1996-2013.
On September 6, 1986, he married Dorothy L. Allen at Progressive Missionary Baptist Church in South Bend, IN. To this union two children were born, Lauren Kelsey and David Lee, Jr.
David is survived by his wife, Dorothy L. Mitchell of South Bend, IN; a daughter, Lauren Kelsey Mitchell (fiancé, Frank Mwaisaka) of Osceola, IN and their son, Isaiah F. Mwaisaka; a son, David Lee “D.J.” Mitchell, Jr. of South Bend, IN; his mother, Bobbie Jean Mitchell of Phoenix, AZ; four sisters, Ruthie Lee Jackson, Carolyn Elaine Mitchell, Belinda Jean Richey, and Sandra Ann Mitchell, all of Phoenix, AZ; a sister-in-law, Paula Jean Mitchell of Phoenix, AZ; along with several nieces, nephews and cousins; his best friend, Vegas Ferguson of Richmond, IN; long-time friends, Darnell Sells of Phoenix, AZ; Michael Studer of Edwardsburg, MI; and Mitch Matheos of Knox, IN.
He was preceded in death by his father, Elbert Mitchell; and a brother, James Elbert Mitchell.
David enjoyed hunting, fishing, and was a workout fanatic.
David faithfully served as a Respiratory Therapist until six weeks ago when he was forced to stop working due to illness. Even during this difficult time, he still had plans to return to work. He was one of the Best Respiratory Therapist employed at Memorial Hospital. He will be dearly missed by the doctors, co-workers and patients he so diligently helped to care for.
Visitation will be from 2-4 & 6-8 p.m. Friday, June 8, 2018 at Kaniewski Funeral Home, 3545 N. Bendix Drive, South Bend, IN.
Funeral Services will take place at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, June 9, 2018 at Kaniewski Funeral Home, South Bend, IN, with Rev. Ricardo Taylor officiating. Burial will take place at Resthaven Park Cemetery in Phoenix, AZ at a later date.
Donations may be made in David’s memory to the: American Heart Association, Greater Midwest Affiliate, Memorials and Tributes Lockbox, 3816 Paysphere Circle, Chicago, IL 60674.
To send online condolences, please visit www.kaniewski.com.