Cover photo for Donald Roden's Obituary
Donald Roden Profile Photo
1930 Donald 2017

Donald Roden

July 25, 1930 — April 25, 2017

Donald J. Roden, 86, Bismarck, passed away April 25, 2017 at CHI St. Alexius Health in Bismarck.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, April 28, 2017 at Spirit of Life Catholic Church, Mandan, ND with Msgr. Chad Gion as celebrant. Interment will be at North Dakota Veterans Cemetery with Military Honors provided by the Mandan VFW Post #707 and the American Legion Post #40. Visitation will be held one hour before the service on Friday at the church.

Donald was born on July 25, 1930 to Stewart and Vivian (Ellis) Roden in Fargo, ND. He was raised and educated in Fargo, graduating from Sacred Heart Academy High School. Don joined the United States Naval Air Corps and served during the Korean Conflict. Don married Constance Ignacak and to this union 5 children were born; Kathleen, Judith, Lauren, Sandra and Jeffrey. They later divorced, and in 1983 Don married Doreen Schafer in Beulah, ND. He worked in construction at Dakota Gasification, which later was called Basin Electric where he worked as a facilities superintendent. He drove school and tour buses during his retirement.

His life experiences led him to tell great stories and eventually led him to write his memoirs. He would regale his experiences during his time in the war, including the time he was shot down by a Russian submarine over the Mediterranean Sea. Don would do anything for anyone and was a kind and generous man. He enjoyed hunting and fishing, as well as camping and boating.

Don will be deeply missed by his wife, Doreen; children Kathy (Mark) North, Fargo, ND; Judy (Ron) Cole, Olympia, WA; Lori (James) Wamsley, East Northport, NY; Sandy (Mike) Daley, Leslie Chapel, FL; and Jeff (Christine) Roden, Lindenhurst, NY. Stepchildren, Julie (Randy) Jacobson, Rochester, MN; Jeff (Debbie) Schafer, Beulah, ND; Dawn (John) Zimbro, Golden Valley, ND; and Denise (Russ) Wolf, Bismarck, ND. Don also has 23 grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren, with another on the way. He is survived by siblings Virginia (Tom) Grady, West Fargo, ND; Sue (Bob) Tompson, Duluth, MN; and David (MaryAnn) Roden, Duluth, MN.

Don was preceded in death by his parents, Stewart and Vivian, and sister Phyllis (Tom) Sornsin.

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