Donald J. Colpaert, age 83, of McHenry, IL, died Friday, Feb. 27, 2009 at Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington, IL.
He was born April 9, 1925 in Duluth to Josef and Elisa (Onrad) Colpaert.
A resident of Duluth for most of his lifetime, he lived in Illinois for the past year.
He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy, serving during WWII and the Korean War as a damage controlman, 2nd class.
He first worked at DM & IR Railroad in Duluth, working with his father and his brother. He later worked for Baxter Cabinetry, and then Duluth Lumber & Plywood as a carpenter cabinetmaker, followed by work as a carpenter for the U.S. Air Force. He later worked in the civil engineering field, retiring in 1981.
Don enjoyed fishing and spending time at his cottage on Whitefaced Lake. He liked to travel with his wife, Betty, following his retirement, especially enjoying trips to Texas.
He was a member of the Disabled AmVets, American Legion Post #71, VFW, and the Moose Lodge.
Survivors include a son, Ronald (Joyce) Colpaert of Spring Grove, IL; a daughter, Peggy (Mitch) Larson of Jones Creek, GA; five grandchildren, Jonathan (Laura) Colpaert, Jacob (Veronica) Colpaert, Sara Colpaert, Cody Larson, Brock Larson; three great grandchildren, Nathaniel, Alyssa, and Jacob Colpaert; and his companion of 16 years, Lillian Gustafson.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 45 years, Betty, on September 9, 1991; a brother, Sylvan in 1979; a sister, Lorraine Angell in 2008; and a daughter-in-law, Judy Colpaert in 2005.
Visitation will be from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. Friday, March 6, 2009, at Bell Brothers Funeral Home, 601 N. 56th Avenue W, Duluth, MN 55807.
Visitation will continue on Saturday, March 7, at the funeral home from 10 a.m. until the time of service at 11 a.m.
Interment will be in Oneota Cemetery, Duluth with Military Honors conducted by the Duluth combined Honor Guard.
For those wishing to send an expression of condolence, the family suggests memorials to the American Cancer Society or the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.