Donald Edward West of Eaton Rapids,
Donald West joined his wife in a heavenly choir and dancing on October 1, 2020. He was born August 5, 1928 in Cleveland, Ohio and was able to work his way through college (GMI) for an engineering degree in Flint, MI. He then earned his MBA at Central Michigan University. He was conscious early in his life what his purpose was on earth: to make this world a better place, especially for young folk. While commanding American Legion Post 165 in Midland, he founded a Sons of the American Legion squadron. Living in Bullock Creek while president of Southtown Little League for two years, he spearheaded a goal to build two regulation diamonds so 200 boys would have a good place to play baseball.
Serving on the board of Lansing Community Credit Union for 14 years, he pushed for many rules making it easier and cheaper for members to get loans. In Mason he coached a Babe Ruth for a couple of years and even the Mason baseball team for a couple of games. During winters in Harlingen, TX, he volunteered to teach 5th grade students for over 15 years how to read and comprehend stories. For a couple of years, he was a greeter at the local airport welcoming incoming travelers to Lansing and helping outgoing fliers with any issues.
He helped direct and sing on the Eaton Rapids Senior Center chorus where his best enjoyment was when they sang at rehab centers. His role for several years as an impersonator of a departed person on cemetery tours allowed him to bring that person’s role to life in a positive way. Don also made popcorn at a local hospital for over 20 years and was volunteer on the month in October 2017.
He enjoyed seeing the smiles on the faces of the customer. He always bought a few bags of popcorn to distribute to patients where he sang. As a wood carver, he personally carved over 40 whimsical walking canes and gave them to family and friends who needed them. He was an optimist and really enjoyed life and living.
His beautiful wife, Jackie, died in January 2019 and they were married for over 64 years. His brother, Jerry died in 2013 and sisters, Betty Mason in 2016 and Patti Westland in 2019. He is survived by his 4 sons; Kerry (Barbara), Brian (Cindy), Dana, and Don Bo (Kelly). He has 5 grandchildren and 1 great-grandson, He also is survived by 2 sisters, Helen Marie Lawer, and Phyllis Shaw.
Funeral services with military honors will be 11:00 am Saturday, October 10, 2020 at the Mills Funeral Home, Shelly-Odell Chapel. Visitation will be held on Friday from 4 pm – 7 pm and one hour prior to the service on Saturday. Memorial contributions may be made to the First Presbyterian Church, 162 Bridge St. Dimondale, MI 48823 or the Eaton Rapids Senior Center, 201 Grand St. Eaton Rapids, MI 48827. To share online condolences or memories please visit, www.millsfuneral.com.
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