Donald Graydon Sailors entered into the gates of heaven surrounded by his loving family at his side on Sunday, April 20, 2008, at Community Hospital in McCook at the age of 68 after a recent battle with lung cancer.
He was born April 7, 1940 at Thedford, Neb., the son of the late Rev. C.A. and Lillie (Elder) Sailors. He spent the marjority of his younger years in South Sioux City, Neb. The family came to McCook in 1954, where his father was pastor of First Assembly of God Church. He graduated from McCook Senior High School in 1958 and attended McCook Junior College.
On June 21, 1959, Don married Donna Peters in McCook. To this union, they were blessed with three wonderful children, Donny, Dennis and Deb. They spent their married life in McCook where Don was involved in several local businesses including managing the McCook Townhouse Retirement Center, owning and operating the Imperial Townhouse and working at the local Monument Company for the past 10 years. He retired at the age of 67.
He was on the board of the Midget Baseball League and served as Vice President and President of the League. He was involved in Cub Scouts and enjoyed hunting and fishing.
Don had a passion for music and was a very talented musician. His love of music led him to play in multiple bands with his two sons and various other area musicians. His true enjoyment in life was spending time with his children, grandchildren and family.
His grandchildren held a special place in his heart. Some of the memories that will be cherished most about Don was his humor, kindness, compassion and unconditional love for everyone in his life.
Even at the time of his death, he tried to comfort his family by trying to bring humor and laughter so we could all enjoy the short time we had left together. Don's strong faith in God brought him through many tough and challenging health issues throughout his entire life.
Don is survived by his wife and companion of almost 49 years, Donna; two sons, Donny Sailors and his wife, Pam of McCook, and Dennis Sailors and his companion, Ashley Hansenauer, of South Sioux City; one daughter, Deb Friend and her husband, Jim, of Grand Island, Neb.; four grandchildren, Derek and Matthew Sailors of McCook, Specialist Mandy Friend, serving in Bagdad, Iraq, and Josh Friend of Grand Island; two sisters, Bev Earnest of Stratton, Neb., and Gloria and husband, Willis Schultz of South Sioux City; two brothers, Sherrill Sailors of South Sioux City and Doyle Sailors and wife, Eileen of Sioux City, Iowa; and many special nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
Don was preceded in death by his parents, the Rev. C.A. and Lillie Sailors; his in-laws, Lee and Clara Peters; two brothers-in-law, Ed Bruggeman and James Earnest; a niece, Patty Bruggeman; and two nephews, Jimmy Earnest and Gary Sailors.
Funeral services will be Thursday, 2 p.m., at Assembly of God Church in McCook with Pastor Eddie Wright officiating. Interment will be in Memorial Park Cemetery in McCook.
Memorials may be given in his name and friends may call at Herrmann Funeral Home in McCook from 9 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Herrmann Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.