Donald Melroy Mattson, age 86, of Kenyon, MN died on November 21, 2020.
Don, the third of seven children of Peter and Henrietta (Luhman) Mattson, was born near Cannon Falls, MN on April 25, 1934. Work was important to Don from an early age. In addition to working on his family farm, he frequently helped neighbors, was an active member of the Spring Garden Lutheran Church, and enjoyed school activities. He led a church youth group to a convention in Boston, MA, enjoyed competing on his high school track team and graduated from Cannon Falls High School in 1952. He worked at a number of jobs after high school, including as a carpenter and at a slaughter house. His participation on a competitive bowling team and dehorning neighbor’s cattle gave rise to many good-natured stories. Don joined Northwest Airlines in 1957, where he worked as a Stock Clerk for 40 years.
Don married Marlene Danielson on May 24, 1958. They had two sons, Mark and Curtis. Don especially enjoyed operating a hobby farm while raising his family. Caring for animals, cutting firewood, and maintaining his farm place were frequent activities. He enjoyed the outdoors. Hunting trips to Wyoming and northeast Minnesota, as well as fishing at his cabin near Alexandria; on Lake Michigan; in Ontario, Canada; and Alaska were highlights. He especially liked owning and training harness-racing horses and selling antiques. He remained an active member of Spring Garden Lutheran Church throughout his life, serving as a Council member and on the Cemetery Board. Don enjoyed traveling with Marlene. Together, they visited Alaska, Hawaii, the Orient, and Europe.
Don enjoyed people and sharing his good humor. Work, farming, school, hunting, fishing, horses and antiques provided opportunities for him to socialize – he never met a stranger. Don was also proud of his family. He especially adored his grandchildren (Lauren, Erik and David) and great grandchildren (Jade and Audrey).
Don is survived by his devoted wife Marlene, their two sons Mark (Deborah) of Green Valley, AZ and Parkers Prairie, MN and Curtis (Kelly) of Glen Allen, VA, three grandchildren and two great grandchildren. He is also survived by one brothers Morris and two sisters Darlene Mueller and Cheryl Grunzke. Preceding Don in death are his parents and two brothers (Clifford and Merle). Don's brother Bernie survived him, but has since died.
Don lived and received excellent care at the Kenyon Senior Living facility throughout the last several years of his life. His family wishes to thank KSL staff and administrators. Donations to the Spring Garden Lutheran Church Memorial Fund are suggested (P.O. Box 237, Cannon Falls, Minnesota 55009)
A celebration of life for Don will be held on Saturday, July 17, at 11:00 am, at Spring Garden Lutheran Church, 10239 Co. 1 Blvd, Cannon Falls, MN 55009. There will be a time to greet his family one hour prior to the service. The service will be held outdoors in the pavilion, so please bring a chair. There will be a committal service at the Spring Garden Cemetery to follow. Lunch will be served in the church basement following the interment.