Donald Ray French was born Oct. 17, 1930, in Mc Paul, Iowa, the son of Frank and Lois (Cain) French. He attended high school in Thurman, graduating in 1948.
On Aug.12, 1952, Don was inducted into the United States Army. He served during the Korean War until receiving his honorable discharge on Aug. 14, 1954, having attained the rank of corporal.
On Aug. 1, 1956 Don and Patricia Baker were united in marriage at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Maryville, Mo.
Following the war, Don continued his education at Northwest Missouri State University where he received a degree in education in 1955. He later earned his Masters in Education from the University of Nebraska and a Specialist in Education degree from the University of Missouri.
Don served as high school principal at Murray and Correctionville. He also owned and operated the French Market and Driftwood Coin Laundry in Correctionville.
Don was a member of St. James Catholic Church in Le Mars. He also belonged to the Floyd Valley Hospital Auxiliary, National Education Association and Mumford-Moon Post #79 of the American Legion in Correctionville.
Don was an avid outdoorsman. He enjoyed quail, partridge and pheasant hunting, fishing and morel hunting.
He and his family traveled extensively throughout the United States and visited Canada and Mexico.
He enjoyed reading, was an accomplished bowler and, in later years, took up woodworking, especially fretwork.
He will be lovingly remembered by his wife, Pat of Le Mars; a son, Kenneth and his wife, Linda of Le Mars; a daughter, Karen Palmer and her husband, Bill of Ennis, Texas; five grandchildren, Meredith Jorgensen and her husband, Jacob of Sioux City, Lora (Palmer) Baker and her husband, Gene, Leanne, Steven and Michael Palmer, all of Ennis, Texas; a sister, Pat Winans Ireland and her husband, Don of Rockport, Mo.; and a niece, Vicki (Winans) Kawakami and her husband, Ben of Plano, Texas.
He was preceded in death by his parents; mother and father-in-law, Margaret and Herbert Baker; and brothers-in-law Bill Winans and Paul Baker.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 9, at St. James Catholic Church in Le Mars. The Rev. Matt Hewitt will celebrate Mass. Burial will follow at Calvary Cemetery in Le Mars. Visitation will begin at 2 p.m. Friday at the Mauer - Johnson Funeral Home in Le Mars. The rosary will be recited at 3 p.m., with a scriptural prayer service at 7 p.m. The family will be present to greet friends from 6-8 p.m. There will also be one hour of visitation at the church on Saturday prior to Mass.
Memorials may be directed to Pheasants Forever or an organization of choice.
Memories and expressions of sympathy may be directed through www.mauerjohnsonfh.com.