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Donald L. Jones

| December 27, 2005 11:00 PM

Donald L. Jones, 70, died in his sleep on Sept. 26, 2005, with his son Edward, by his side.

A memorial service and celebration of Don's life was held Oct. 1, officiated by his youngest daughter Donna at the Flahiff Funeral Chapel in Homedale, Idaho. In the spring of 2006 his ashes will be joined with his wife's at a very special beaver dam in Alaska.

Don was born Oct. 4, 1934, in Dallas, Texas to Florence (Langley) and Rossman Donnelly. When he was young, his mother divorced and returned to Montana and married William L. Jones, who adopted Don as his own.

He was raised on a ranch outside Cascade and after graduating from high school he enlisted in the Air Force during the Korean War with dreams of being a pilot, but that was not meant to be when his ear drums erupted during a flight. He was discharged with honors and was proud to be a veteran.

As a boy, Don worked on his uncle's ranch in Lincoln County, and he has numerous relatives in Libby and Troy.

Don married Barbara Jean Dickson on Jan. 5, 1958, a union that lasted over 42 years. They had three children: Bill, Eddy and Donna.

He worked a variety of jobs from being a licensed power monkey to ranching, as anequipment operator and a sheriff in Montana. He worked in Wyoming, worked in a coal minie in Colorado, where he was involved in a major cave-in accident, many men would have given up with his broken body but he continued on.

On one of the many adventures Don and Barb were talked into visiting Alaska in 1969 for a vacation. They fell in love with Alaska and stayed until the mid 1980s. In Alaska Don worked various jobs in Anchorage and Healy and finally settled in Fairbanks. During his tenure there he helped build Market Basket, and he enjoyed a life long friendship with Terry McLain. After that job he started working civil service at the Fort Wainwright water treatment plant and retired from there.

Don was involved with charities such as the Two Rivers Grange Hall, 4-H clubs and many others. For medical reasons he and Barb were forced to leave Alaska. They retired in Homedale, Idaho, where they continued to help others through various charities.

Don was preceded in death in by his loving wife Barbara, his parents and many close relatives Edna Dickson, Sid Dickson and many others.

He is survived by his ever faithful dog Babe, whom he found in his back yard after a visit to his wife in the hospital. Babe helped him handle many hardships. They took many road trips together the last few years; they even had a trip planned to Florida and California this winter. Babe got to travel instead and is now a happy California girl with Don's sister Mary.

Don is also survived by son Bill, his children Shawn and Tiffany and their children of Coldwater, Mich.; son Edward of Anchorage and his daughter Samantha of Fairbanks; his daughter and son-in-law, Donna and Michael Waller, and their children Brianna and Tommy of Valdez, Alaska; sisters Mary Dickson, and her son Michael of California, and Billie Keaster of Black Eagle; brother-in-law John Dickson of Delaware; sister-in-law Joyce Hillberry of Florida; and numerous cousins and lifelong friends.