Donald Clarkson, age 69, died peacefully in his sleep Sunday, March 23, 2014 in Ardmore, Oklahoma, with his children Donna, Dena, and Clay at his side. He was born Dec. 31, 1944 in Dubuque, Iowa to Mark & Ida Clarkson. He was married to Rebecca (Pace) Clarkson.
He was preceded in death by his wife Becky; his parents; brother Norman Clarkson; sister Sandy Harkness & her husband William, and brother in law Wayne Shultz.
He is survived by his three children: daughter Donna Clarkson of Durant; daughter Dena Hammond and husband Kerry of Durant, and son Clay Clarkson and wife Kristy of Oklahoma City.
He is also survived by his 4 grandchildren: Tayler Hammond; Jordan Hammond; Kolby Clarkson, and Cade Clarkson.
In addition, Mr. Clarkson is survived by sister Margie Schultz; sister Janice Steele and husband Eugene; brother Wayne (Butch) Clarkson and wife Ann; brother Bill Clarkson and wife Joyce; sister Bonnie Olson and husband Bruce; sister Kathy Winter and husband Carl; sister in law Patty Clarkson; and brother Mark Clarkson and wife Cynthia; numerous nieces and nephews, and friend Jerry Mills.
A memorial service will be held for Don at 2:00 Saturday, April 26, at Brown's Funeral Service in Durant.
Don spent his childhood in Hanover, Illinois working on the family farm with his brothers and sisters. He graduated from Hanover High School. At age 17 he enlisted in The United States Air Force and was stationed in the Philippines. He attended Southeastern Oklahoma State University on the GI bill, where he obtained a Bachelor's Degree.
Don opened an insurance agency in Durant in the 1970's, and then branched off into income tax services. He was a pioneer in the employee leasing business, establishing a leasing company in Durant in 1984, one of the first in the state. Don operated the business until he retired from it in 1991. Several employees who worked for Don went on to establish successful leasing businesses of their own using his innovative ideas. After retirement, he went on to explore several business ventures in Durant.
Becky was the love of Don's life, and in 2007 they moved to Hawaii so she could pursue her teaching career as a special needs teacher, then returned home to Durant in 2009.
Don was a big sports fan, and loved the Chicago Bears and the White Sox. He also loved the Oklahoma Sooners football team, and told Donna on a recent visit that beating Alabama in the Sugar Bowl was as rewarding as winning a national championship! Don was known amongst his friends as someone who enjoyed a good joke, especially when he was the one who sprung it!
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.brownsfuneralservice.com.
Arrangements are under the direction of Brown's Funeral Service, Durant.