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Don was survived by his beautiful wife of 41 years, Linda Land; his mother Nona Land; sister Sandra; brother-in-law, Merrill; daughter, Donita Mattern; son-in-law and very good friend Dan Mattern; nieces, Kimberly and Phyllis; three grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. Don was born to Nona and Shelby Land in Brownwood, Texas on Oct. 24, 1942. He was a very well-liked football player in Brownwood and Sweetwater. At the age of 18 years he bravely joined the Navy and married his first wife, Jean. Together they had their only child, daughter Donita, who was born in 1962. He served in the Navy for seven years before getting a job at the INL plant outside of Idaho Falls, Idaho. Don married his soul mate, Linda in November 1969. Don worked for 30 years when he and Linda decided to retire and spend more time outside hunting, fishing and taking care of their sheep, goats, cats, dogs and whatever other animal showed their cute face at the front door. Don was an amazingly gentle person with the utmost respect for nature. He taught many of us to look at the world from the Worldâ€™s perspective, not only our own. He tried, mostly in vain, to get everyone around him to slow down and appreciate life for all it has to offer. When he wasnâ€™t at home or panning for gold, he spent much of his time at the river fishing with his longtime friend, Merton Bishop. Don was friends with every person he came across from town to his favorite fishing holes to the mountains where he hunted. These were the places where many of his stories were born. His stories, as they grew, were some of the best because they were told by the best. Patrick McManus has nothing on Donâ€™s legendary stories that will be carried on for generations to come. His stories, sense of humor, patience, generosity, unconditional love and compassion will be remembered by all who ever had the pleasure of meeting him. He will be greatly missed.
There will be a casual Celebration of His Life on Thursday, April 14, 2011, from 2-4 p.m. at the North Bingham County Park (Shelly West River Road Shelly, Id). The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations can be made in his honor to the National Cancer Society or to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. For more details you may email firstname.lastname@example.org.