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Donald S. Anderson, 83, died after a long illness on the morning of Saturday, November 3, 2018, in Fairhaven Christian Retirement Center, Rockford, Illinois. Don was born on May 29, 1935 in Rockford, Illinois. He graduated from East High School in 1953, and spoke often about enjoying his work in a meat market prior to joining the National Cash Register Company - from which he would retire 40 years later. His career spanned from the all-mechanical era to the digital age. He met many people in his work as a service representative covering much of northern Illinois, and enjoyed a long association with many of his co-workers up until his final years.
Don married the love of his life, Barbara (Nelson) Anderson on January 2, 1959, and they enjoyed 59 years together until her death on February 4, 2018. They made their home in Rockford, raising two sons - Brad and Brian - and later built a new house that was special to them when Don retired. Don loved cars from a very young age, something that he learned from his father, and enjoyed reading about the new models, going to the auto show, meticulously maintaining his own cars - especially his red 1974 Corvette - and driving on family vacations. Don loved to drive! The family will treasure the memories of vacations to Leech Lake, Minnesota, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, long driving trips to the western states, the three Walt Disney World vacations for the entire family, and spending days in Chicago. His love of cars also led to a long enjoyment of auto racing, which he would experience on NASCAR race trips with his two boys and longtime special friends. Don also passed along his devotion to the Green Bay Packers to both of his sons.
Don was a lifelong member of First Evangelical Covenant Church, and was deeply involved in many areas of ministry. He served as church moderator, elder, and deacon; served on pastoral search committees; he sang with the Sångarbröderna (Singing Brothers) church male chorus for decades; and built many Habitat for Humanity houses. Both he and Barb were also counselors with the church high school group for many years. He was an example of service to others and will be greatly missed by the church congregation. Through the church, he and Barb made what seems to be countless friends through the years, providing us with many great memories while growing up. In their retirement years, Don and Barb would meet friends for meals - often three times per day - making even more new friends at restaurants in the area. They really seemed to enjoy these years when life was savored every minute. When health problems made them homebound, they really enjoyed when their friends would bring dinner over so that they could still visit. Both Don and Barb loved their four granddaughters, and they attended almost every single school, church, and life event of each of them, making sure that their vacations were planned to allow them to be home in time. Being at "Grammy and Pop's" home created memories that each of the girls will never forget. Don is survived by his two sons, Brad (Jackie) Anderson and Brian (Amy) Anderson, both of Rockford; his four granddaughters, Jaymie (Ben) Heintz of Rockford, Katelyn (Nick) Beyer of Chicago, Corey Anderson of Chicago, and Krista (Connor) Anderson-Larson of Saint Paul, Minnesota. He is also survived by a brother-in-law, Charlie "Ev" Berglund of Rockford, and a nephew, Jeff (Colleen) Berglund of Bloomington, Minnesota. Don was preceded in death by his loving wife, Barb, his parents, Sherman and Vera Anderson, and sister Dorene Berglund. He was also predeceased by Barb's parents, Wally Nelson and Violet Brolander. The family would like to thank the staff of Fairhaven Christian Retirement Center and Northern Illinois Hospice. A Memorial Service in Celebration of Don's life will be at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 8, 2018 at First Evangelical Covenant Church, 316 Wood Road, Rockford, IL. Prior to that, burial will be in Scandinavian Cemetery at 9:00 a.m., followed by a visitation at the church from 9:45 a.m. to 10:45 a.m., and a luncheon will follow the 11:00 a.m. service. Memorials can be made to First Evangelical Covenant Church.

Condolences & Shared Memories (7)

  1. Janice Oliva

    Kate, prayers and thoughts to you and your family during this time of loss. Angels are singing but I know your hearts are breaking. Peace be with you all.

  2. Kathie & Bruce Bridges

    Though we only knew Don & Barb for a short time, they made a lasting impression on us. They will be missed. Regards to your family.

  3. India Blade

    Prayers to the Anderson family, enjoyed waiting on them at Stockholm Inn.

  4. VG

    To the Anderson family, sorry for the pain and emptiness of heart you must feel at this time. The Bible gives us great hope for the future and the opportunity to welcome our loved ones again on a peaceful earth. (John 5:28 & 29) Yes, the earth will become a paradise with eternal blessings to obedient humans. (Psalm 37:29; Revelation 21:4,5)

  5. Marty Davis

    What a wonderful kind man! There was no one in the world my father trusted more than Don. Our parents were life long friends and we had so many wonderful times from Disney to the Wisconsin Fair to NASCAR to trips to Florida or just eating sweet corn and hamburgers. The world is a better place because of Don and Barb. My deepest sympathy to Brad, Brian and your families

  6. Dave and Joyce Davis

    We are saddened to lose such a friend, but rejoice that he is now with our Lord.

  7. Jeanette jacobson

    My deepest sympathy. God bless you all.

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