Obituary: (James) David Horan
August 16, 1966 – August 11, 2022
It is with great sadness that the Horan family announces the passing of James David Horan Jr. after a short, aggressive, illness at the age of 55. He spent his last days at home with his devoted wife of 26 years, Colette, and 21-year-old son Chase. We lost our amazing husband and father — without him our lives will never be the same. His family and friends will remember him for his spirit and love for life!
David was born to his parents Roberta Ann Coletti and James David Horan in Elgin, Illinois and then raised in Alabama. David attended Auburn University and graduated in 1990 with a bachelor’s degree in architecture. The itch to explore took him west, where the mountains and high desert of Santa Fe, New Mexico, attracted his adventurous spirit. It was there he began his professional career with a local architecture firm, while also tending bar, playing guitar and skiing at Taos whenever possible.
Santa Fe was also where David met his wife, Colette, whose family eventually enticed the pair to make the move to Tahoe in 1995. Landing lakeside in Incline and Tahoe Vista the two eventually moved to Truckee in 1997, marrying and settling in Tahoe Donner where the couple has lived ever since with their son Chase.
David’s career moved into high gear in 1999 when he joined Ryan Group Architects, quickly earning a reputation for projects bearing a unique blend of exceptional aesthetics with innovative functionality. Eventually teaming up as a partner to founder Scott Ryan, over twenty-plus years David built a broad and seemingly countless portfolio of both residential and commercial works.
David’s passions were never limited to his career — far from it. A devoted father and husband, family always came first. He enjoyed vacations often filled with camping trips to the Pacific coast and local lakes, where he thrived spending time on the water, on the trails and evenings by the campfire. If anyone had too many interests to possibly devote enough time, it was David. He naturally gravitated to new sports and hobbies with every passing season, feeding his appetite for skiing on both snow and water, golf and mountain biking. Yet through it all he found time to volunteer for both the Town of Truckee Design Review and General Plan Advisory Committee (GPAC), as well as coach youth lacrosse, football and mountain biking.
David was taken far too early, but he has left a permanent mark on the community and lasting memories with family, friends, and colleagues. While his impact as architect will long remain his most visible legacy in the community, to his family and friends, David will be remembered for so much more. David’s personality could light up a room with his creativity, sense of humor and never-ending enthusiasm. He lived every day to its fullest!
A celebration of David’s life will be held on Saturday, September 24 at the Truckee Regional Park amphitheater, starting at 10:30 AM.
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