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Donald McKivett

Donald McKivett Obituary

Donald K. "Dr. Don" 1/31/1953

Don was the son of the late Rose and Milo McKivett. It was from his father that Don inherited his tremendous love of dance, cars, sports and acting. He was truly his fathers son. He took faithful care of his ailing mother and tended her every need until her final day. Don was also preceded in death by his two brothers, Kevin and Evan. He is survived by his sisters, Diane L. Mac Donald (Sturgeon Bay, WI), Denise M. Noboa, (Durham, NC); niece, Kathryn Rose Mac Donald, (Creedmoor, NC); nephew, Kevin P. Mac Donald, (Sturgeon Bay, WI); grandniece, Madalynn Rich (Creedmoor, NC); stepfather, Joseph Wikarski, and significant other, Nancy Plath.

Following high school Don became a deckhand on a Great Lakes freighter for Columbia Transportation. His time on those ships evoked many stories, which he told throughout his life. He then enrolled in Toledo University, for many, many, years, earning him the moniker, "Dr. Don", named by a friend for the length of time it took him to earn his degree. The name stuck with him for the rest of his life. While there he earned a degree in Arts and Science with a major in Performing Arts.

Don began his love of dance as a dance instructor for Arthur Murray and advanced his passion for movement at UT under legendary teacher, Elaine Valois, and for theatre and drama under Bernie Coyne. Don was a beloved favorite on the Toledo Dance scene, known for his elegant dress, style, and charm.

Don learned Tai Chi under the strict guidelines of Master Fong, Dr. Lee, and Gabriel Shin. Don taught Tai Chi at The University of Toledo and provided a free program at Swan Creek Metro Park. He was a prominent figure during the World Tai Chi Day events.

Don made a friend of everyone, never said a disparaging word about anyone. He remained a kid at heart throughout his life and it could be said that "Nobody could keep a Christmas like Don McKivett". He began shopping for gifts the year before and though Don never had much money, every gift was carefully chosen for that person. The gift-wrap was something else, often times consisting of paper bags or newspaper. Never let it be said that the Doc wasted a dime.

Sports were huge in Don's life and he never abandoned his beloved Indians or Browns, no matter their level of play. When a game was on TV, you might find him with the trio "Nick, Denny, and Don", drinking a craft beer, wildly cheering his team on, and loudly booing the opposition. Superstition played a major role in every game.

Don kept in great physical condition, playing pickle ball, riding miles on a bike, practicing Tai Chi, and dancing. He always took pride in his physical condition.

Don loved poetry and his poetry was described by his peers as "Cubist"; his mimicry was superb. A founding member of the Toledo Poet's Center, Don was a mainstay in the annual "Back to Jack" (Kerouac) program. Don was always "on", large arms, legs out front, and his face in yours, in a warm and kindhearted way though; Don totally dominated any room he walked into whether the people were friends or total strangers. Dr. Don; the perpetual performer.

Don was a large advocate for civil and human rights and decried the injustices wrought upon the poor, the disenfranchised, and the unfortunate. Don was a good and true friend and a sweeter soul you will never find. Don was dearly loved, always fun to be with and a bright and shining light in every day. He will be dearly missed by his many friends and family members.

Friends may call at the Reeb Funeral Home, 5712 North Main Street, Sylvania, Ohio Friday June 28, 2013, from 3:00 p.m. until funeral ceremony begins at 7:30 p.m. Online condolences may be offered at


In lieu of flower donations may be made to the .
Published in The Blade on June 27, 2013
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