David Christopher Vaughan, 64, died on Monday, December 6, 2021. David was born in Fort Myers on July 5, 1957. He graduated from Davidson College in Davidson, North Carolina, and earned a master’s degree in real estate at the University of Florida in Gainesville. With his partner, Ted Dickey, he founded and operated Diversified Appraisal, a commercial real estate appraisal firm.
David was devoted to his wife, Cheryl, his children, Bobby, Kimberly and Shane, and grandchildren, Riley and Nathaniel. He was also a treasured friend and role model to his siblings, nieces and nephews, and in‐laws.
Beloved by his family, friends and fellow tennis and pickleball players, David had an enormous—and infectious—love for the everyday joys of life. Whether he was barbecuing on his deck, cheering on his cherished Gators, boasting about his mangoes and avocados (“The absolute best in the world,” he’d say, as he said about so many things he loved and enjoyed), reading a Nero Wolfe mystery, exclaiming at a new bird at the feeder, or simply biking through Fort Myers’ beautiful streets, he embraced and appreciated every experience.
For two years after being diagnosed with a fast‐growing, fatal cancer, he managed to live a full and happy life, often saying that those years had been some of his best. “I’m not going to die today,” he would remind himself and those who loved him, as he chose to approach each new day with hope and a positive spirit.
Fair and judicious, David was open‐minded and accepted different viewpoints. He had an uncanny ability to understand the emotions and intentions of other people and to see to the heart of issues and situations. He was also known for his quick wit and humor, and as every family member, tennis partner and even new acquaintances can testify, no one could escape his good‐natured teasing.
He loved sports and was as passionate about Fort Myers High School teams as his favorite college and professional teams. He was a gifted athlete himself, winner of many local and state tennis tournaments. David enjoyed coaching Little League when his children were young and relished playing—and winning—in tennis and pickleball tournaments with them when they were older. The ultimate strategic thinker, he thrived on games like Fantasy Football and Sudoku, celebrating and crowing at every win.
David is survived by his wife, Cheryl; children, Bobby Vaughan (Samantha), Shane Vaughan, Kimberly Grabowski; and grandchildren Riley Milgrim and Nathaniel Grabowski. His family would like to thank Dr. Lowell Hart and physician assistant Mary Beth Molloy at Florida Cancer Specialists and Dr. Jonathan Von Koenig of Lee Health for the devoted care he received. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.