Mr. Tarinelli graduated from Fairfield Prep, class of 1948, and continued his education at MIT with a degree in civil engineering. He was a lieutenant in the United States Army Air Corps during the Korean War and worked on expanding runways for B-52s in Guam. He then went to work with his father in the Palmer Tarinelli Construction Company. In the early 1960s Donald and his dear friend and partner, Bernard Gilhully, formed Fairfield Associates, building moderate-income housing all over New England. Mr. Tarinelli found himself being drawn to Vermont, and built a vacation home on Stratton Mountain in the early 1960s. The family became avid skiers. In 1972, he and his friend Warren Hellman co-founded the Stratton Mountain School, at which he took great pride in giving the Founders’ Award at graduation each year. Mr. Tarinelli was general manager and president of the Stratton Mountain Corp. from 1973 to 1980. In 1984, he purchased Haystack Mountain Ski Area and his beloved golf course.
Mr. Tarinelli suffered a stroke in 1996 and was paralyzed on one side. His proudest accomplishment was founding, along with his wife, Our Lady of Ephesus House of Prayer Inc. in Jamaica. They were instrumental in building there an exact replica of the Blessed Mother’s last home; the original being in Ephesus, Turkey.
Mr. Tarinelli was predeceased by his parents, Palmer Tarinelli and Loretta Assunta Roberto Tarinelli, and his only brother, John Tarinelli.
Mr. Tarinelli is survived by his wife of 27 years, Mary Fraser Tarinelli; his four children and their spouses, Deborah Purvin and her husband Duane, Donald Tarinelli Jr. and his wife Sue, Christina Mauss and her husband Michael, and Mark Tarinelli and his wife Gillian; seven grandchildren, Marissa and Mac Purvin, Julia and Rachel Tarinelli, Alexandra Mauss, and Zoe and Jake Tarinelli; his first wife, Vivian Hathaway Crouse; his good friends and brothers-in- law, Paul V. Fraser Jr., Philip Fraser and his wife Cathy, and Christopher Fraser and his wife Joanne; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Calling hours will be held at Our Lady of Ephesus House of Prayer, 35 Fawn Ledge Lane, Jamaica, on Sunday, December 9, from 2 to 5 pm. Funeral Mass will celebrated at Our Lady of Ephesus House of Prayer at 12pm on Monday, December 10. Following the burial at Our Lady of Ephesus Cemetery, friends are invited to join in a celebration of his life during a luncheon reception.
Donations in Mr. Tarinelli’s memory may be made to Our Lady of Ephesus House of Prayer Inc., 35 Fawn Ledge Lane, Jamaica, VT 05343, the Stratton Mountain School, or Grace Cottage Hospital. Arrangements are in the care of Ker-Westerlund Funeral Home and Cremation Services at 57 High Street in Brattleboro.