Don Stiles, 1934-2015

Don Stiles
Don Stiles

Donald Stiles, 80, died Jan. 3, 2015, in Bedford, TX.  Burial will be at Dawson, IA, with a family memorial service to be held at a later date.

Don was born on March 11, 1934, in Coon Rapids, IA, to Lloyd Amos and Louise (Jones) Stiles.  Don began his school years in the one room Orange Township country school near Coon Rapids.  In 1940, his parents purchased a farm northwest of Dawson and Don became a Dawson Bulldog.  He graduated from Dawson High School with the class of 1951.  Don accepted Jesus into his life while he was still in his teens.  Following high school, Don joined the US Navy Reserve and was called to active duty aboard the USS Salem.

Don was an only child but always felt part of a large extended family as Lloyd’s siblings Dean, Verne, Wayne, Merle, Bertha, Paul and Darwin Stiles as well as Louise’s sister, Helen Jones, were frequent visitors on the farm during Don’s early years.  Don was the eldest of the many first cousins soon to follow.

In June 1958, Don and Phyllis Whisler were married in Perry.  They were the parents of daughters, Deanea and Donna, and years later welcomed son-in-law Matthew Johnston into their family. Together Don and Phyllis shared a good life, worked side by side on the family farms and raised their daughters just across the road from Don’s parents.  The home farms became the backdrop for family gatherings and memories throughout the years.  Upon retirement, Don and Phyllis lived in Rippey and later in Jefferson.  When Phyllis’s health declined, they moved to Coon Rapids.  They were married almost 51 years when Phyllis passed away in June 2009.  In 2013, Don moved to Bedford, TX, where he spent his final years.

Don and Phyllis partnered with Lloyd and Louise in Stiles and Sons Livestock and Grain.  Don was proud to receive a soil conservation award for innovative farming practices.  Don and Phyllis shared an avid interest in family genealogy.  Don enjoyed writing and contributed to several family genealogy publications over the years.  He became a lifetime member of the Stiles Family in America Association. Don was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Korean War Veterans Association.  He loved to travel and his journey through life allowed him to sail the seas, visit several continents, islands, and many states.

Don was preceded in death by his wife, his parents, and his uncles and aunts.  He is survived by daughters Deanea of West Des Moines and Donna (Matt) Johnston of Euless TX; sisters-in-law Lois Pompe of Slater, Joyce Armstrong of Ames, Peggy Whisler of Corona, CA, and Rita Revelle of West Valley City, UT; Aunt Lillian Petty of Statesboro, GA; nephews, nieces, cousins, and friends.

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