Our Donald Duck

Published 8:13 pm Wednesday, November 30, 2011

One of the displays for the holidays at the Museum is Donald Duck ‘s  rocking chair with a teddy bear that he used as a  child.  No this does not belong to  THAT  Donald Duck. You may think that Donald Duck is a joke or an urban legend but Donald Duck does reside in Edwardsburg.
He grew up in Edwardsburg along with his brother Jerry and he graduated from Edwardsburg High School in the 1950s.  His  yearbook Senior Analysis  states …”his favorite pastime is sleeping, although you’ll see him at the airport flying planes or playing on the Little League Basketball Team.  Don hopes to go to college after school and then become a pilot.” He lived up to that prediction.
His desire to fly began at the Elkhart Airport. After a summer and fall of flight instruction, he got his private pilot’s license.
Don did go to Western Michigan University  and was almost expelled for enrolling with a fictitious name. He joined the Air Force and was sent to Lackland Air Force Base in  San Antonio, Texas for preflight training. He flew twin jet trainers  along with other planes.
If you look up you can see him in the air over Edwardsburg most days.
His love of aviation has followed him all of his life. But when he was not up in the air he spent most of his lifetime getting  the “heat “ from his  daytime job.  He started Duck Heating and Cooling which  recently he passed on to his son Scott.
His love of flying  and the love of the military is part of their family  life since his sons have been part of the Marines.
Don has suffered the brunt of many jokes in his lifetime and he continues to live up to his reputation.  He always has a joke or story to tell and he loves “quacking” up people. He says it took a long time to find a suitable wife.  No her name is not Daisey or Daffy just Karen.  All of the Daisey’s he met were too old for him.
Donald’s parents were owners of Duck Appliances in Adamsville which is now Camden’s.  Why did his mother name him Donald? “Just because.”
Duck is not the only airplane owner in Edwardsburg.  There are about 15 owners and pilots. He has created an air field behind his house on Mason Street.  His wife Karen accompanies him on many of his trips and they can be seen at many air shows in the Midwest and Florida.
Now that Duck is retired he is rebuilding and restoring old airplanes but he is a pilot first, just what he always wanted to be.