Donald R. Kjar April 18, 1942 - May 21, 2012 Donald Robert Kjar of Paynesville, Minn., went home to be with his Savior on Monday, May 21, 2012, at the VA Medical Center in St. Cloud, after a courageous battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig Disease. He was 70 years old. Donald Robert Kjar was born on April 18, 1942 in Steamboat Springs, Colo., the son of Robert and Gladys (Phelps) Kjar. He attended and graduated from Loveland High School, the Goethe Institute in Berlin and Colorado State College. He served in the U.S. Army and was stationed in Berlin during the construction of the Berlin Wall. Upon his return, he began his teaching career in Hot Springs, as a social studies teacher and wrestling coach. On June 13, 1970 Donald was united in marriage to Nancy Krutsch in Hot Springs. To this union two sons were born. In 1970, the family moved to Paynesville, where he taught German and Social Studies for 34 years in the Eden Valley-Watkins School. He took many groups of students and adults to Germany as a way to share his love of the country and its language. Don was an active member Grace Methodist Church where he served as a trustee. He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends, traveling, working in the yard and on the house and reading. He is survived by his wife, Nancy of nearly 42 years, two sons; Steven (Danielle) Kjar of London, England and Scott Kjar of St. Paul, Minn., a sister, Linda (John) Behrens of Mankato, Minn., his brother, Fred (Susan) Kjar of Tucson, Ariz., as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Donald is preceded in death by his parents and an infant sister, Marjorie. A service of celebration was held Friday, May 25, 2012, at Grace United Methodist Church in Paynesville. Burial took place at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis. Memorials may be given for research into ALS.
Published in The Hot Spings Star on May 30, 2012