Hermosa’s Dundee Jones became Nevada’s ‘Father of Parks and Rec’

Former Mira Costa and El Camino baseball star Dundee Lee Jones enjoyed tying flies and pulling them off his hat to give to strangers. Photo courtesy of the Jones family

(Reprinted from the Las Vegas Review Journal)

Former Hermosa Beach recreation department baseball coach and Little League coordinator Dundee Lee Jones passed away Jan. 12 from COVID-19 complications. He was 84 and living in Henderson, Nevada.

Jones was a standout baseball player at Mira Costa High and a power-hitting first baseman at El Camino College. After being drafted by the Washington Senators, he played two seasons in the minor leagues. Jones worked for Hermosa Beach while attending Long Beach State.

In 1968, he accepted a job as a recreation supervisor with the City of Las Vegas, and moved his family to the Las Vegas Valley (though he kept his Hermosa Beach home). In 1973, the City of Henderson named him its Director of Parks and Recreation, a position he held until he retired in 1997. Under his leadership, Henderson became a model in the U.S. for Parks and Recreation departments. In 2005, Nevada’s “Father of Parks and Rec,” as he had become known, was appointed to the Henderson Parks and Rec board, where he served until 2017. 

The Dundee Award, named after him, is the highest award given by Nevada Recreation and Parks Society. The City of Henderson recognized Jones on June 14, 2017 and dedicated the Burkholder Baseball Fields, which have been officially named the Dundee Jones Baseball Complex. Dundee was known for his goofy sense of humor, and took pleasure in giving many strangers a hand-tied fly off his hat. In his free time, Dundee enjoyed tying flies, fishing, being with family, and supporting local youth sports. He could often be heard encouraging his grandsons, and other young players to “rip a rope” on the baseball field. 

Dundee is survived by his wife of 59 years, Sally, children Daphne (Rick) Brennan, Anson (Georgie) Jones, Creson (Tim) Oakley, and Brenon Jones. He will also be missed by grandchildren Kelsie, Kenny, Allison, Briley, Jake, and Daisy, as well as the hundreds of players he coached, people he mentored, and many friends.

Services will be private. To plant trees in memory, please visit Sympathy.Legacy.com. ER

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Written by: Jen

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