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Donald "Don" Heronime


1931 - 2019
Donald "Don" Heronime Obituary
Donald "Don" Heronime Carbondale--Donald James Heronime, 87, passed away on Tuesday, June 11, 2019 at Brookside Retirement Community in Overbrook, Kansas. He was born September 17, 1931 to Gus and Elizabeth Urban Heronime in Wichita.

Don attended several schools through his youth, and graduated from Plevna High School in 1951. He joined the U.S. Army immediately thereafter at the age of 17 and served for six years.

Don's army career began at Fort Benning, Georgia for his initial training. He served two combat tours in Korea as an infantryman during the Korean War, earning the Combat Infantryman Badge and the Korean Service Medal with two bronze stars. Don was also stationed at Warner Kaserne, Munich, Germany. During his time in Germany he sang in the 16th Infantry Ranger Chorus. Also while stationed in Germany, Don ran the 400m hurdles and steeplechase on the Army track team, earning several medals. In Germany, Don was also awarded the Army of Occupation Medal with the Germany clasp.

After Don was honorably discharged in May 1957 at Fort Riley, Kansas, he bought a farm in Osage County, Kansas, starting a small dairy operation while working as a maintenance man at Stormont-Vail Hospital. It was while working at Stormont-Vail that Don met Myrtle Kress. They were married January 26, 1963. Shortly after their marriage, Don began working for the Topeka Public Schools, where he continued for 34 years until his retirement.

Don and Myrt enjoyed many years as members of the Topeka Ballroom Dance Club and the Topeka German-American Club. Don was a long-time member of the St. Patrick Catholic Church in Scranton, Kansas and a lifetime member of the Topeka VFW. Don devoted many hours of service coaching and inspiring young athletes in the Carbondale community. He was always there for the activities of his sons, nephews, and many of the youth that he adopted. Don also enjoyed singing in the Scranton community church choirs for local holiday celebrations. He also indulged his creative side with his extensive model train displays.

Don is survived by his family including: his wife of 56 years, Myrt; son Jim and wife Heide of Phoenix, Arizona, son Neil and wife Wendy of Atlanta, Georgia; sister, Betty Jean Dawkins of Freeport, Florida, sister, Valeria Afshar of Littleton, Colorado; and brother, Paul Heronime of Carbondale. Additional survivors include his adopted daughter and son-in-law, Sandi and Gary Pope of Vassar, Kansas; his four adopted grandchildren, Ryan Pope, Brandon Pope and wife Stefanie, Lisa Foiles and husband Alex and Darrell Hickel; and his two great-grandchildren, Wyatt Pope and Matthew Foiles.

Don's warmth and humor made a big positive impact on many lives in his extended family, the Brookside Retirement Community and the community at large. He will be greatly missed.

Funeral mass for Don will be at 10:00am on Monday, June 17 at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Scranton. Family will receive friends at 9:00am and the congregation will pray the rosary at 9:30. Burial with military honors will be at the St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family asks memorial contributions be made to St. Patrick Catholic Church for the building fund, sent in care of Feltner Funeral Home, 818 Topeka Avenue, Lyndon, KS. 66451. Online condolences for the family may be left at feltnerfuneralhome.com.

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Published in Topeka Capital-Journal from June 14 to June 15, 2019
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