David R. Priest of Austintown passed away on December 13, 2022. Born in Alliance on August 28, 1985, he was the son of Ron and Diana Priest of Alliance. Dave was a 2004 graduate of West Branch High School and Mahoning County Career and Technical Center. He earned an Associate of Science Degree in Information Technology & Network Administration from Pittsburgh Technical Institute in Oakdale, PA.
From his first job as a newspaper carrier, Dave always had a job. His early experience included a bowling alley, masonry work, and work on the family Christmas tree farm. After graduation, he worked for LANTek Computer Services in Carnegie, PA. Beginning through CGI he provided services for Novelis in Warren, OH. After Novelis secured David as their employee, he earned numerous awards and recognitions being promoted to IT Specialist. In this role, he also served other Novelis sites including the one in Fairmont, WV. Most recently, he was employed by HighTech of Youngstown assigned as a contractor for Horizon Connects of Columbus.
David is survived by three children, Skylar Broussard and Rosalyn Byrne of Pittsburgh, PA, and Mason Priest of Austintown. He is also survived by his aunts and uncles: Robert and Helaine Priest, Ray and Kathy Priest, Emily Honaker, Richard and Sandy Honaker, and Monica Weekes and Robert Honaker. His cousins include Robert Priest, Rachel Horak, Sarah Welsh, Rebecca Sipes, Brennen Honaker, Casey Honaker, Abby Honaker-Schroeder, and Matthew Honaker. David is also survived by the mothers of his children, Shawna Broussard and Dawn Priest. He was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Robert and Marie Priest, and maternal grandparents Dr. Linton and Betty Lou Honaker. He was also preceded in death by a Cousin Susan Priest Niccum.
David was a member of Austintown Fitch Choir Parents and an Austintown Intermediate School Watch Dog. He supported his children and all their endeavors.
Dave leaves many true friends who loved him dearly. On their behalf, one wrote the following,
“We have never known a friend quite like David. No words can adequately capture just how magnificent his existence was to this world. Dave was always our number one fan and the light in some of our darkest hours, just as we were his lights.
Dave never knew a stranger. If you said “hello” you had a friend in Dave. He was the type of friend who would move mountains just to help you. He was the most selfless, kind, and loving man and didn’t care what other people thought. Dave always helped everyone. From helping friends move or lending an ear or a shoulder to cry on, to hauling the kids to practice and games, to babysitting at the last minute, he was always there for everyone. He got the practice lights for the Austintown youth football team, so they could continue their practices the last two weeks of the season. He has done this for the past two years. He not only helped all his friends and youth sports teams, but he has also helped the community by volunteering several times. David was the epitome of a great guy.
Dave loved his children beyond belief, he loved his family and friends. In his spare time when he wasn’t being a computer genius or watching the Pittsburgh Steelers, you could always find David and his children camping, having bonfires, having drinks on the deck, playing cards with friends, swimming, attending concerts, or taking trips to Cedar Point & Yogi Bear.
Our lives are forever touched by him, and our lives will never be the same without him. We are all honored to have known you and have been able to call you, our friend.
Please feel free to wear purple as it was David’s favorite color. “
His family also shares these words from Pastor Coralee Cox, “As my own ‘pastor’s heart’ is breaking, I am remembering David Priest. Dave. Getting to know him first through his parents, Ron and Diana, I was greatly privileged to perform his wedding to Dawn - a ceremony in which all of their precious children participated by responding to a ‘family vow.’
I also experienced Dave as a hard worker, an advocate for and protector of ALL the children in his wide circle of life. This seemed to come natural to him, since Dave impressed me as quite the “big little kid” himself: fun-loving and fun-instigating, yet a most responsible and trustworthy leader. I always enjoyed watching him interact with children, including during the drop-off and pick-up times for our Vacation Bible School.
It has been my honor to serve as Dave’s pastor through the ministries of the Union Avenue United Methodist Church…. Finally, I offer these words with prayer - for God to hold you close in His comfort and strength, to make His continual presence known to you, and to carry you in His love…through this day and all the days ahead. I also share with you this verse from the Bible’s book of Isaiah, chapter 41, and verse 10. Within this verse we find a powerful promise from our God, especially fitting for a day such as this:
‘Do not be afraid, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.’ May it be dear ones. May it be. Amen.
Dave’s friends and family may say a final goodbye, there will be a visitation Sunday, December 18 from 2:00 to 4:00 at Cassaday-Turkle-Christian Funeral Home, 75 South Union Avenue, Alliance, Ohio.
A memorial and celebration of his life will be held at a future time.
“Do not let Dave’s death define his life.”