Cover photo for Donald Joseph Sanderson's Obituary
Donald Joseph Sanderson Profile Photo
1926 Donald 2017

Donald Joseph Sanderson

March 26, 1926 — January 26, 2017

Memorial services for Donald Sanderson, age 90, of Milaca, will be held Friday, February 10, 2017 at 2 PM at Trinity Lutheran Church in Milaca with Rev. Tim Bauer officiating.  Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church on Friday.  In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred.Donald Joseph Sanderson was born March 26, 1926 in Hayland Township, Milaca, Minnesota to Axel and Emma (Balwanz) Sanderson. He lived with his grandparents, Herman and Johanna (Schultz) Balwanz while attending grade school in Hayland Township. The family then moved to Saint Paul where he completed his education at Saint Paul Franklin Schools. He entered the U.S. Army at the end of World War II serving in Korea as a Rifleman. He was honorably discharged and returned to Milaca. He married the love of his life, Elaine Larsen, on March 6, 1948. They made their home in Saint Paul before returning to the Larsen Farm to help raise Elaine’s younger siblings after the death of her mother. Here they raised three children, Darlene, Dean, and Diane. Don worked at the Saint Paul Stockyards as a youth. He was a farm hand for Roy Broberg and later worked at Mille Lacs Sand & Gravel. His true calling was farming and he took special care of the family farm. He was an accomplished woodworker, could fix just about anything, enjoyed putting model airplanes, and puzzles together, and fishing. Don and Elaine loved to travel with family and the Primetimer’s Club. He loved his family and was always surrounded by his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He had a special place in his heart for his nieces, nephews, godchildren, brothers-in-law, and sisters-in-law. He passed away peacefully surrounded by his family Thursday, January 26, 2017 at the Mille Lacs Health System in Onamia. Don is survived by his wife of 68 years, Elaine; children, Darlene (Carl) Moody, Dean Sanderson, and Diane (Boyd) Hedin all of Milaca; seven grandchildren, Karla (Michael) Dumonceaux, Jenny (Dewey) Schramm, Kim Nelson, Emily (Jeff) Kiel, Adam (Jennifer) Sanderson, Joe (Erin) Sanderson, and Jeannie (Byron) Byker; twleve great-grandchildren, Jake, Amber (Junior), Cody, Kaitlyn, Coleton, Isabel, Saige, Grace, Ella, Evelyn, Jaxson, and Avery; two great-great grandsons, Dillon and Theodore; nieces, nephews, other family and friends. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Herman and Johanna; parents, Axel and Emma; brothers, Vernon, Melvin, and Richard; and daughter-in-law, Alyce Sanderson.
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