Christopher James Gregory, 47, of Cathedral City passed away at his home on Thursday, March 15, 2018. His wife and family were by his side. Chris was born April 13, 1970 in Sacramento, CA and lived in Cathedral City, Palm Springs, Sacramento, Salinas, San Bernardino, Germany, Florida, and Australia.
Chris was diagnosed with lung cancer three years ago, a type that commonly affects non-smokers. Throughout his treatment, he focused on planning for the fight and continuing to live his life to the fullest. His strength and positivity was an example to many. He continued to work as passionately for wildlife conservation as always, working until the last few weeks preceding his death.
Chris attended Salinas Christian Schools – Salinas, CA, Merryhill Elementary School – Sacramento, CA, Arden Middle School – Sacramento, CA, Rio Americano High School (Graduated in 1988) – Sacramento, CA, Cosumnes River College – Sacramento, CA (AA Degree), University of California, Davis – Davis, CA (BS Degree), University of Florida – Gainesville (MS Degree), and Griffith University – Queensland, Australia (PhD).
Summer after high school, Chris participated in an exchange program in Belgium, traveled throughout Europe, and worked in Germany for a year prior to starting college. He began his conservation work at the universities he attended. In addition to Europe and Australia, he traveled to Belize, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Japan. Chris also made it to all 50 U.S. states, the last being Alaska with his wife, Noelle, in the fall of 2017. He was passionate about his work as a wildlife biologist and was dedicated to environmental conservation, wildlife research, and teaching and mentoring undergraduate and graduate students. He always wanted to make a difference. The kindness and generosity, extraordinary intellect, and humor that Chris brought to many lives will be greatly missed.
Chris was a member of the American Society of Ichthyologist and Herpetologists, Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles, Australian Society of Herpetologists, Ecological Society of Australia, Environmental Futures Centre, The Wildlife Society, and several other environmental conservation affiliations.
Chris loved and played basketball in Palm Desert, Sacramento, Germany, Florida, and Australia. He was an avid tennis player and took up surfing and playing the guitar and piano. He enjoyed hiking and exploring natural wonders. He always had something on his bucket list.
He was preceded in death by his grandfather Peter Gregory, grandmother Lorraine Gregory, grandfather Fernie Losada, grandmother Edna Alba Losada, and aunt Donna Lynn Losada.
Chris is survived by his wife Noelle Ronan of Cathedral City, CA, mother Linda Gregory of Sacramento, CA, father Tom Gregory (John) of Covington, KY, uncle David Losada (Apple) of Aptos, CA, first cousin Marik Enney (Kirk) of El Dorado Hills, CA, second cousins Ryan and Nathan Enney of El Dorado Hills, CA, father-in-law Bill Ronan of East Aurora, NY, mother-in-law Nancy Ronan of East Aurora, NY, brother-in-law Scott Ronan (Kelly) of Alden, NY, sister-in-law Kelly Ronan (Brendan) of Rochester, NY, brother-in-law Shawn Ronan (Renee) of West Falls, NY, and numerous cousins, colleagues, and friends.
Chris’ family would like to acknowledge his oncology team at Kaiser Permanente, the Kaiser Permanente Infusion Center staff in Palm Desert, 21st Century Oncology, UCLA Health, and the caring staff of Charter Hospice of the Desert.
A Chapel and Graveside Service will be held Thursday, March 29, 2018 at 1:00p.m. at the Queen of Heaven Cemetery at 18200 Damian Way, Salinas, CA. A Memorial Celebration of Life will be held in the Palm Springs area at a later date.
Donations in Chris’ honor can be made to the American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org/involved/donate/memorial-giving.html or The Nature Conservancy at www.nature.org/membership-giving/more-ways-to-give/tribute-honor-giving/index.htm .
Our most sincere sympathies to the family and friends of Christopher