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Donald Barker

April 9, 1925-Aug. 2, 2009

Donald L. Barker, 84, of Sunset, Texas, died suddenly on Sunday, August 2, 2009 at his home in Sunset, Texas.

Donald Leroy Barker was born to Clare and Verna Barker on April 9, 1925 in Westport, Minn. He grew up and attended school in Glenwood, Minn., where he and his cousin James Randall were noted for winning many jumping competitions at the Glenwood Ski Jump Tower. It is generally believed that they, at age 13, were the youngest competitors to ever jump in the adult division competition at the Minnesota Winter Carnival.

Donald enlisted with the U.S. Navy during World War II, and was deployed to the South Pacific, where he served on a submarine. He was later transferred to the quartermasters, where he transported military supplies throughout the east coast. It was this training on heavy equipment and trucks that formed the basis for his career.

Donald married Isabelle Haiden of Millerville in 1948. In 1973, hed married Joyce Britt and lived at Brainerd. He later lived in Park Rapids and was a member of the American Legion there.

In 1980, Donald moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas, where he worked as a heavy equipment operator. In 1999, he retired from TexStyrene and settled on 10 acres in Sunset, Texas.

Surviving Donald are his wife, Joyce; three children, Bradford Barker of Las Vegas, Nev., Jackie (Steve) Dombrovski of Prior Lake, Minn., and Bonnie (Rod) Brothers of Eustice, Fla; six stepchildren; five grandchildren; 13 step-grandchildren; three great grandchildren; three step-great grandchildren; sisters, Vivian (Ron) Lee of Audubon, Donavan (Tony) Gausman of Morris and June (Butch) Barsness of Crystal, Minn.

Pending cremation, a celebration of Donald's life will be held this fall at the Grove Lake Cemetery in Villard.