Obituary: Daniel Patrick Morrissey, Jr.
July 24, 1987 – February 20, 2022
Daniel Patrick Morrissey, Jr. (DJ) passed away unexpectedly on Sunday, February 20, 2022, while visiting his mother in Hagerstown, Maryland. He was born on July 24, 1987, in Tyler, Texas, to the late Daniel Patrick Morrissey, Sr. and Kathy Therese (Stevenson) Haskins. He is also survived by siblings Kathy Haskins, Kaden Willbern (Kristy), Allena Willbern and Susan Valentine (Justin); niblings James, Destiny, and Summer; as well as his beloved dogs Mooney and Lupin.
He was preceded in death by his brother, Robert L. Starliper.
DJ moved to Winter Park in the fall of 2009 with empty pockets but little doubt that this season would be his most epic yet. He had been hired by the resort to be an Eagle Wind “lifty”, and like so many before him, what he lacked in proper clothing, experience in the mountains, and snowboarding ability, he more than made up for with enthusiasm and a vision of his future. Shortly into the season though, he found a few kindred spirits in the staff at Doc’s Roadhouse and it did not take much to bring him in from the cold when they offered him a job in the kitchen. In typical DJ fashion, he quickly worked his way to the top, ultimately managing Doc’s for several seasons before becoming the general manager at The Ditch on 40 until the summer of 2021. Throughout those years, DJ left a lasting impression on too many hearts to count and his absence will leave a hole in the heart of this valley.
DJ was more than just a presence in Grand County. He was a force to be reckoned with! To say he was memorable would be an understatement. He had a passion for life most only dream of, a love for his friends that was unparalleled, and a way with strangers that made everyone around him feel like family. From the moment he moved here, he knew he was home. He could make friends with a flagpole, and probably did at least once, but if you were lucky enough to call DJ a friend, you know how much you were loved. With him around it was easy to take our 300 days of sunshine a year for granted because the light inside DJ made it feel like 365. He left us way too soon, but he didn’t waste a minute while he was here. He lived for new experiences, took chances, and dreamed big. Nothing was impossible to DJ. Every challenge was embraced and met with a sly grin and a “full send”. He was always on the move yet somehow always present. Hopefully his soul is at rest now or maybe he has just moved on.
Perhaps he really was…born on the wrong planet.
A celebration of DJ’s life will be held at the Rendezvous Event Center Stage on Monday, March 14, 2pm. Food and non-alcoholic beverages will be provided potluck style and those with the means are encouraged to bring a dish to share.
In lieu of flowers, please use the Venmo QR available on the Facebook Memorial Page listed below. Cash donations will be accepted at the service or can be dropped at The Ditch in a sealed envelope labeled DJ Morrissey Memorial fund. All donations will be used to purchase pet insurance for Lupin (Mooney is happy with her mom in Ohio) for as long as funds will allow.
For more information or to donate please visit:
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