NEW ULM - Donald "Don" R. Jorgenson, Sr., 86, of New Ulm, died Tuesday, April 8, 2014 at the Oak Hills Living Center in New Ulm.
Funeral service will be 11 a.m., Saturday, April 12, 2014 at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in New Ulm with Pastor Debra R. Bergstrand officiating. Burial will be in the New Ulm City Cemetery, Soldiers Rest Section with full military honors being conducted by the New Ulm Area Comrades of Valor Honor Guard.
Visitation will be 4 - 7 p.m. Friday and from 7:30-8:30 a.m. Saturday at the Minnesota Valley Funeral Home, SOUTH CHAPEL in New Ulm and will continue for one hour prior to the time of service at the church on Saturday. To leave an online condolence for his family or to sign the guestbook go to: www.mvfh.org.
Donald Robert Jorgenson was born on November 9, 1927 in Yankton, South Dakota, to Amos and Emma (Ellefson) Jorgenson and was the sixth of ten children. Don attended Bristol High School in Bristol, South Dakota, where he lettered in basketball. In 1944, he enlisted in the United States Navy during WWII. He served aboard the USS Vogelgesang and USS Boise which included the European Theatre of Operation. He was honorably discharged in 1948. Don received his GED from Bristol High School. On August 24, 1948, he was united in marriage to Shirley Eliason in Webster, South Dakota. Don was a member of the National Guard HHB 1st BN 125th from 1955 to 1958 with honorable discharge. Don worked as a butcher and meat cutter in cities including Aberdeen and Pierre, South Dakota, before moving to New Ulm in 1956. There he became produce manager for Jenkins/Madsens/Randalls for 27 years. In later years Don did custodial work at State Bank and Trust. He retired in 1990. Don taught youth firearm safety, umpired baseball and softball, refereed basketball and football, and was involved in establishing VFW hockey and baseball in the '70s. He enjoyed being active with fireworks associated with the VFW. Don was a member of Seifert-Bianchi American Legion post 132, New Ulm DAV Post 15, and the Alfred Nagel VFW Post 1648 where he served as Post Commander for six years. He was an active member of the color guard and VFW firing squad. He also enjoyed helping with the VFW walleye and venison feeds and selling poppies. Don was co-chair and instrumental in fundraising for the restoration of the Doughboy after its destruction in 1995. In August 2013, Don received an award from the VFW for his Continuous Membership of 55 years. He was a member of Our Savior's Lutheran Church in New Ulm and served as head usher and liked attending Saturday night services and the fellowship. Don enjoyed spending time attending his grandchildren's sporting events, golfing, and playing cribbage. He loved his two cats, Morris and Cleo. He was known for his sense of humor, pulling pranks, and celebrating life. He enjoyed the annual Army/Navy football game. He also enjoyed playing Santa Claus at Turner Hall, banks, and family homes. Many people enjoyed Don's famous "maid-rites," which he served for years. Don trusted in God, and loved his family and country.
Don is survived by his wife, Shirley Jorgenson of New Ulm; daughters and sons-in-law, Dianne Jorgenson of St. Peter; Sherry (Loren) Ennis of St. Cloud; Candy (Bob) Lindmeyer , Gayle (Steve) Hawkins all of New Ulm; son, Don Jorgenson, Jr. of New Ulm; seven grandchildren; Shawn Ennis, Stacy Hvinden, Stephanie Snyder, Shane Lindmeyer, Daniel Hawkins, Scott Hawkins, Andrew Hawkins; five great-grandchildren: Tyler, Piper, Tavia, Caitlin, Grayson; sister Betty Tanley of Scottsdale, Arizona; brothers and sisters-in-law, Orville Jorgenson of Newton, Iowa; Ken and Nelda Jorgenson, David and June Jorgenson all of Aberdeen, South Dakota; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Carmen and Ruby Sakarison of Webster, South Dakota; and many nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents; sisters Elsie, Violet, Alice, Helen; and a brother, Carroll.