David “Roger” Shay of Farmington, NM returned home to his Heavenly Father on Sunday July 21, 2019 at the age of 75 years. He was surrounded by his loving family during his final hours here on earth.
Roger, as many knew him was born on June 26, 1944 to Tom and Leona Shay in Ogden, UT. He grew up in Utah and New Mexico along side his two siblings as the eldest son. Growing up his parents instilled the values of family, hard work and community which Roger exemplified. He attended Farmington High School and met the love of his life Diana in 1960. In high school he played football and ran track, anyone who knew Roger knew of his love for sports. He and Diana wed on December 22, 1962 and began a 56 year marriage in which their love allowed him to witness three generations in his lifetime. After graduating high school in 1963, Roger went to work on offshore rigs during summers and throughout college. He attended New Mexico State University where he worked as a Resident Assistant and was a mentor to Big Brothers and Big Sisters of New Mexico. He graduated in 1970 becoming a New Mexico State Alumni and settled in Farmington, NM where he began his teaching career at Farmington High School. Roger taught economics and started the early adulthood program at the High School, and was awarded “Outstanding Young Educator.” He coached football and track where he lead teams to achieve state championships and inspired his students to succeed in education and in life. In 1976 he went to work for his father-in-law and mentor Ken Britton at Big Red Tool Inc. He learned valuable skills in business and put those skills to use when he opened A-1 Machine Inc. with his business partner Ernie Emery in July of 1977. He worked part time at A-1 until 1986 when Ernie passed away, at that time he decided to dedicate his life’s work to this company. In the community of Farmington he served as President of the Boys and Girls Club and was instrumental in supporting the building of a new club. He served on the Four Corners Economic Counsel, the board for San Juan College School of Energy and was a New Mexico Amigo for over two decades. Roger was an advocate for students and wanted them to have the best opportunities available. He served on the committee for a second high school and was a leader in ensuring the success of Piedra Vista High School. Husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, friend, coach, teacher, mentor and hero were several words anyone would use to describe Roger. Anyone who knew Roger could hear his boisterous voice throughout the city. Many recall his voice being an inspiration from the sidelines as he coached YAFL, FABC, his family and many other athletes. After his coaching years ended that voice continued from the bleachers at Farmington High School and throughout the city.
Roger is survived by his loving wife Diana; children Kelly Shay (Suzie), Brian Shay (June), Levi Shay, Angela Mulheran (Brian), Serene Lawrence, and Tahna Ortega (Carl). He is also survived by 12 grandchildren, Chris Shay (Karrah), Isaiah Shay (Lionel), Alicia Shay (Kyle), Paul Shay (Chantal), Brennon Shay (Tatum), July Shay (Tessa), Alexis Shay, Brendon Mulheran, Patrick Shay, Austin Ortega, Brody Mulheran and Andrew Ortega. He is also survived by 10 great-grandchildren, Alex Shay, Sydney Shay, Nick Shay, Destiny Sanchez, Greyson Clark, Carter Clark, Luke Clark, Conor Shay, Oliver Shay and Sean Clark. He is also survived by his two siblings Della Martinez (Tony) and Tomas Shay (Susan), along with many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. He was preceded in death by his loving parents Tom and Leona Shay.
A rosary will take place at Farmington Funeral Home on Thursday August 1, 2019 at seven o’clock p.m. A Catholic funeral mass will take place at Sacred Hearth Catholic Church of Farmington, NM on Friday August 2, 2019 at two o’clock p.m. with a reception to follow. Mass will be celebrated by Father Tim Farrell; Pallbearers will be Chris Shay, Isaiah Shay, Paul Shay, Brennon Shay, July Shay and Alex Shay; Honorary Pallbearers will be Nick Shay, Brendon Mulheran and Patrick Shay. A family internment will take place on a date yet to be determined.
In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to: Little Sisters of the Poor, 1900 Mark Ave, Gallup, NM 87301; Wounded Warrior Project, 4899 Belford Road, Suite 300, Jacksonville, FL 32256; Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project, 2970 East Lake Lansing Rd., East Lansing, MI 48823. Rogers care is entrusted to Farmington Funeral Home 2111 West Apache Street, in Farmington, 505-325-2211. Those who wish to express their condolences may do so at www.farmingtonfuneral.com.