Portola Valley native Michael Dunne dies


Michael Dunne, a native of Portola Valley, liked to sail, to sing and to play sports. His focus in college was landscape architecture, and he was in his third year working at The Grove restaurant in San Francisco when he died on May 8. He was 31.

Steve and Dorian Dunne hosted a memorial for their son on May 19 at the Portola Valley Town Center. "He was one of the most kind, humorous, talented and harmonious people that any of his family, friends, co-workers and acquaintances have ever known," his father said in an email.

Michael Dunne attended Ormondale and Corte Madera schools in Portola Valley, then St. Francis High in Mountain View, where he lettered in tennis for four years, his father said. He also played two years on the St. Francis junior varsity basketball team and liked soccer and snowboarding.

He graduated from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo with a degree in landscape architecture.

Throughout his life, Mr. Dunne involved himself in music, whether in bands, including Outpatient and Los Trancolizers, or entertaining at parties. He sang indie folk music, his father said. "There was an enormous depth of feeling in his singing," he said.

At the time of his death, Mr. Dunne was part of a tight-knit group working at The Grove restaurant in San Francisco, his father said. "Life was a wonderland to Michael and he was surrounded by incredible groups of family, friends and support," he said. "Ultimately, challenges that he held too close to his inner thoughts prevailed."

Mr. Dunne's mother, Karen Kiley Dunne, preceded him in death.

Donations in his name may be made to the "Michael Dunne Memorial Scholarship Fund" c/o East Palo Alto Tennis and Tutoring (EPATT), P. O. Box 60597, Palo Alto, CA 94306, Tax ID 26-3316879. Corporations may match contributions.

— Dave Boyce

What is community worth to you?
Support local journalism.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

All your news. All in one place. Every day.

Why is it becoming increasingly impossible to open a restaurant on the Peninsula?
By Elena Kadvany | 29 comments | 5,363 views

An Easy Emissions Win
By Sherry Listgarten | 3 comments | 895 views

Helping Partners Become Couples (vs. Helping Couples Become Partners)
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 720 views

It just takes time
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 633 views

Sugar Detective
By Laura Stec | 2 comments | 536 views



On Friday, October 11, join us at the Palo Alto Baylands for a 5K walk, 5K run, 10K run or half marathon! All proceeds benefit local nonprofits serving children and families.

Register now