Donald D. Thompson, age 91, of Yankton, South Dakota, passed away peacefully Wednesday, July 23, 2014, at Avera Sister James Care Center in Yankton.
Funeral Services will be 10:30 AM, on Wednesday, July 30, 2014, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Yankton with Reverend David Lund officiating. Burial will be in the Garden of Memories Cemetery in Yankton. Visitation is from 5:00 to 8:00 PM on Tuesday, July 29, 2014, at the Wintz & Ray Funeral Home in Yankton with a prayer service and masonic service at 7:00 PM by the St. John's Masonic Lodge No. 1 A.F. & A.M.. Visitation will resume one hour prior to the funeral at the church on Wednesday.
Pallbearers are Doug Hirsch, Tate Thompson, Justin Lillie, Kyler Lillie, Paul Roach, and Jamie Roach. Honorary pallbearers are Kendall Lille, Jordan Gillmore, Jennifer Hildebrand, Shari Lucas, and Carla Sakrison.
Don Thompson was born August 19, 1922, in Volin, South Dakota to Clarence and Clara (Bruget) Thompson. He was baptized and confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church in rural Volin, attended Central Grade School and graduated from Volin High School in 1940. After high school Don continued to work on the family farm with his dad and later began raising cattle. He belonged to the Yankton County Cattle Feeder's Association, the South Dakota Cattlemen's Association, and National Cattlemen's Association and won many soil awards. He met Mary Frances Biggerstaff at the Yankton Playhouse and later married Mary Fran on August 10, 1963 in Volin. They purchased the family farm, where they lived until moving to Yankton in 1998.
Don loved to sing and was the soloist for many funerals and weddings. He sang in a Barbershop Quartet, the church choir and for 60 years with the Double Eagle Chorus. In July of 1953, he sang with the Double Eagle Chorus at the Dedication of the Shrine of Democracy at Mount Rushmore, at which President Dwight D. Eisenhower was in attendance. Don was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Yankton, the Sons of Norway, St. John's Masonic Lodge No. 1 A.F. & A.M. and a staunch Republican who ran as the Republican Candidate for District 19 Senate Seat in 1990.
Don was a very intelligent man who was humble but confident and always willing to give. He loved his family and would always take time to come in from the field to saddle up the horses for his grandchildren. He enjoyed picking the best steer from the herd so he could grill the best steaks for his family, camping with the Good Sam group, fishing, and getting on the 4 wheeler to check on the cattle or the crops back in the creek. He would make it a point to stop his day to eat wild chokecherries. After retirement, he was known for baking sour cream rhubarb pies, lefse and shinglebread.
Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Mary Frances Thompson of Yankton; daughter, Debra (Doug) Lillie of Yankton and their children; Jordan (Darren) Gillmore, Justin, Kendall and Kyler; son, Todd (Debbie) Thompson of Ethan, South Dakota and their son, Tate; step-daughter, Dee (Bob) Roach of Blue Springs, Missouri and their children: Paul, Jamie (Lea Ann), and Jennifer (Bill); step-son, Dr. Larry (Cheryl) Cook of Nevada City, California and their daughters: Shari (Jim) and Carla (John); 14 great grandchildren; 3 great great grandchildren; sister, Deodata Cowley of Baltic, South Dakota; 7 nieces and nephews; and many great and great great nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brother-in-law, Paul Cowley, nephews Dennis Duane Hirsch and Jeff Cowley and many beloved aunts and uncles.
Memorials may be directed to the Trinity Lutheran Church Organ Fund.
Messages will be reviewed and posted within 1 business day.
Todd and family, I am so sorry for the loss of you dad..may peace be with you..
Alan and Jane Louder
Don was the soloist at our wedding 6 June 1964.What a wonderful voice.He will be missed by all who knew him.The choir in heaven will be blessed with another bass/baritone..
Dick & Norma Hanson
Our neighbor for over five years. Such a special guy. My Jonathan and Todd were always up to something!!! When my Jocelynn was only six months old I bought a black kids saddle from Don. Jocelynn is 28 now and we still have that special saddle. We use it on our miniature horse and give kids rides. Deepest sympathy and our prayers.
Lynette (Goetz) Snoozy
I'm very sorry for your loss. Your dad will surely be missed by so many. His wisdom and music alone will be in my heart for a long time. I trust and hope that somehow your family will move forward knowing that Don's spirit will remain alive in you forever.
Todd & Family,
We are so sorry for the loss of your dad. We are thinking of all of you in your time of sorrow.
Troy and Andrea Hart & family
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