Don was born in Cleveland, OH on January 9th, 1927 to Roy Jones and Beatrice (Koslowski) Jones. He died unexpectedly on July 29., 2019. His fondest childhood memories including getting his first paper route at age 11, and swimming in Lake Erie, which was only about two blocks from his house. He left school at age 15 when his father died in 1942 and secured a job to help support his mother and younger sister. Soon thereafter, the family moved to Detroit to live with Beatrice’s brother. In Detroit, Don landed a job rebuilding V8 motors at a local Ford dealership where he eventually became an excellent mechanic.
At the age of 17, Don joined the Navy during WWII. After graduating from Electricians School, he was assigned to the USS Yorktown CV10 aircraft carrier and there he served his country for the duration of the war. After his discharge, he attended Central Radio & TV School in Kansas City which launched him on a successful radio career beginning with KWYO in Sheridan, WY. In 1953, he was hired by KBMY radio and moved to Billings.
In 1969, he married Gini Seitz Angel in Billings. In 1970 he left KBMY and joined the Chamber staff as Convention & Visitors Bureau Manager. He always said his best job was in the oil development business with Norsworthy & Reger, where he was hired in 1974. He retired at age 62 and has spent the last 30 years volunteering at the desk of the Billings Rotary Club.
Don and Gini celebrated their 50thanniversary together on a cruise to Alaska with their children last month. Don loved cruising, and he and Gini took over 30 trips on small and large ships. His greatest joy was spending time at the family cabin on the Stillwater River.
Don was preceded in death by his parents; his sister Dorothy; and oldest son, Kenneth. He is survived by his wife, Gini; and children: Judy A. (Clark) Whiteley of Billings, Donna L. Jones of Woodland, CA, Patrick V. Jones of Billings, Christopher A. (Tamara) Jones of Aldie, VA, Dr. Thomas E. (Carolyn) Jones of Lakeville, MN and D. Anthony (Gigi) Jones(LtCol USAF,Retired)of Kailua, HI; and his special niece, Linda (Gil) Wiechowski, in Sterling Heights, MI. After Dorothy died, Gini and Don spent several vacations in Michigan and Billings with them. He is also survived by 18 grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren, Gini’s five Seitz brothers and many extended family members.
In lieu of flowers, the family would suggest donations to the Billings Rotary Foundation, PO Box 1491, Billings 59103, or your charity of choice.
You are invited to a Time of Remembrance for Don at 6:30 p.m. on Monday evening in the new addition banquet room at Saint Thomas the Apostle Church. Please bring a story to share. All Gini’s Seitz brothers helped to put together this evening.
Memorial Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m., Tuesday, August 6, also at St. Thomas Church. Cremation has taken place.