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obituary-Donald Purcell Ryan


Don Ryan

GREEN RIVER-Donald Purcell Ryan, age 79, passed away May 27, 2017 after a short illness. Donald was born May 24, 1938 in Borger, Texas to Arthur Leslie and Edith Marvel Purcell Ryan. He is the oldest of six children.
Donald spent a great deal of his childhood working with his dad in the crop dusting business and building a lifelong love of airplanes. Donald graduated from Dayton High School in 1956 and then moved to Sego, Utah to join the rest of his family who had already made the trek to Utah. He started a lifetime career in the trucking business when he went to work at W. S Hatch Company in Thompson, Utah at the age of 18. Donald traveled with Hatchco to Woods Cross, Utah where he met and married his sweetheart, Donna Louise Ackerman on Dec. 29, 1960. Together they moved to Vernal where their oldest daughter April Dawn Ryan was born in 1968 and then to Richfield where their second daughter, Mistie June Ryan was born in 1969. When the girls were still small, they moved to Centerville, Utah and made that their home until both girls graduated from high school.
Donald was a very loving father who spent most of his time following two little girls around to dance recitals, band concerts, softball games and church programs. He also spent a lot of time with his little family and many close friends in Moab, Utah at the jeep safari, twice a year, every year! Much time was also spent in Green River with his mother, brothers and sister. Donald loved working with his hands. He was a great mechanic and loved working on old trucks and jeeps. He also liked wood working and made wood chests, clocks, necklaces and even a rocking horse, that he loved to give away to family and friends. He also loved to weld and made napkin holders and little cowboys from horseshoes.
Donald worked 30 years for Hatchco before they merged with Jack B Kelley, Inc. and was offered a position in Amarillo, Texas. Donald was excited to move back to his home state of Texas. He worked another 21 years for JBK Inc. before retiring at the age of 70. Donald and Donna also owned a helium rental business and delivered helium tanks all over the panhandle of Texas. Instead of retiring to his rocking chair he took a job at ACTT Inc. in Amarillo driving a vacuum truck for a couple of years before he truly retired. In 2012, Donald and Donna fulfilled a dream to come back to Green River, Utah for their retirement time. They were able to spend five years in Green River driving up Sego Canyon and being tour guides to whoever they met, visiting old friends and spending time with family.
Donald is survived by his wife of 56 years, Donna of Green River, Utah; daughters, April of Dalhart, Texas and Mistie (Tyler) Bastian of Green River, Utah; granddaughters, Lacey Dawn Ryan and Autumn Rose Ryan of Amarillo Texas, Cassidy June Bastian and Morgan Ryan Bastian of Green River Utah; great-grandson, Dezmyn Patrick Ryan of Amarillo, Texas; brothers, Tom Ryan of Green River, Richard Ryan of Henderson, Nevada, Randy (Kathy) Ryan, and Michael Ryan all of Green River; and his sister, Marvelgaye “Susie” (Kevin) Hatch of Hanksville, Utah.
Preceded in death by his parents Les and Marvel Ryan and his beloved nephew, Staff Sgt. Patrick Ryan Pentico.
Funeral service, Saturday, June 3, 2017, 12:00 noon at the Green River Bible Church (370 West Main Street/New Building) in Green River where the family will receive friends at 10:30 a.m.   Interment, Elgin Cemetery. Arrangements entrusted to Mitchell Funeral Home of Price where friends are always welcome daily and may share memories of Don online at www.mitchellfuneralhome.net.

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