Dale Joseph Donat, Sr., 75, of Bemidji died Friday, Dec. 5, 2008 at North Country Regional Hospital in Bemidji.
Funeral Services will be 11:00 am, Wednesday, Dec. 10 at the Cease Family Funeral Home in Bemidji with Rev. Eric Hucke of the United Methodist Church officiating. Special music will be by Lois Holloman, Sandy Stott, and pianist Cynthia White. Visitation will be from 4 - 7 pm on Tuesday, Dec. 9 at the Cease Family Funeral Home in Bemidji and one hour prior to the service at the funeral home. Interment will be at the Farris-Farden Township Cemetery in rural Bemidji, Military honors will be provided by the VFW Post # 1260 of Bemidji. Lunch will be held at the old Nary School following the graveside service.
Casketbearers will be Brian Johnson, Brett Johnson, Steve Donat, Greg Eibensteiner, Jason Hadrava, and Kevin Bitker.
Honorary Casketbearers will be Brent Hadrava, Gary McCollum, Grandchildren: Rachel and Michelle Donat, Zachary and Aaron Staranowicz, Richard Dagestad, John Donat, and Steve Nyland.
He was born September 14, 1933 in Upsala, MN, the son of Joseph and Mary (Walker) Donat. He left home at an early age and joined up with the circus, taking care of the animals, and general maintenance work. After that he had various odd jobs before being drafted in the Army on 19 October 1954. He was stationed in Mannheim, Germany as a Light Truck Driver and was discharged with Honors on 5 October 1956. He returned to the St. Cloud area working as a truck driver for Kraft Foods Co., then a truck driver for Mid-Continuant Trucking, plus owned his own trucks hauling from Coast to Coast. After moving to Bemidji, he worked in construction, then later for Nordheim Roofing as a roofing foreman. When they closed he worked for Bergland Roofing until he retired in 1995. He was enthusiastic about fishing, hunting, camping in Minnesota, and Canada. He also loved to travel, deep sea fishing, the casino, country music, being with family and friends. He married his true love, Carol Yvonne Braman, 18 August 1973 at the United Methodist Church in Cass Lake, MN.
He is survived by his wife, Carol of Bemidji; sons, Dale (Bobbie Jean) Joseph Donat Jr. of Bemidji and Jerome Dale Braman of Crookston, Minn.; daughter, Charlene (Jimmy Staranowicz) Yvonne Donat of Belton, TX; adopted son, Gary McCollum of Bemidji; grandchildren, Rachel Mary (Travis Koster) Donat of Byron, Minn., Michelle (Brandon) Jean Rogers of Aitkin, Minn., Zachary Nathan Staranowicz of Austin, TX, Aaron Nigel Staranowicz of Arlington, TX; beloved dog, Bear-Bear, his constant companion; brothers, Sylvester "Buster" Donat of Bemidji, Duane "Sam" (Jan) Donat of Bemidji and Daryl (Angelia) Donat of Clayton, Del.; sisters, Arlene Kudak of Columbia Heights, Minn., Lila Jean (Donald) Connant of Sonra, Calif.; sisters-in-law, Zella Donat, Grace Donat, Bonnie Pearson, Linda Donat, Roseanne Kopervich, Lisa Kopervich; brothers-in-law, John Donat, Anthony Kopervich, and James Kopervich, many cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends he has met through out his life.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brothers, Donald and Eugene; sister and brother-in-law, Beatrice and Tom Marty; sister-in-law Neda Donat and brother-in-law, Joseph Kudak.