Donald (Don) Linke, 89, of South Ogden, passed away at home Sunday, April 26, 2020 of congestive heart failure with his wife by his side. A private family service will be held soon and a celebration of life in the future. Arrangements have been entrusted to Aaron’s Mortuary.
Don was born in Wheatland, ND on August 26, 1930 to Hubert and Margaret Linke. He excelled in farming, football, and was a graduate of Castleton High School. After 13 years service in the military, Don went to Los Angeles and graduated with a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Northrup Institute of Technology. Don held leadership positions for the Air Force Air National Guard, North American Rockwell, and TRW / Northrop Grumman. In addition to his work with Air Force aircraft, Don led critical testing efforts for the TRW-built Pioneer 10 and 11 spacecraft, which launched in 1973 and left our solar system in 1990.
Don met his wife Hazel Ann Johnson in Fargo, ND at the roller skating rink and they were married on August 28, 1954 at Richland Lutheran Church in Walcott, ND. During his life, Donald was active in the Lutheran Church, recently a member of Ascension Lutheran Church. Don and Hazel Ann lived most of their first 20 years together in California, moving to Utah in 1975 where skiing became a core family activity.
Don loved the outdoors, he was a fishing guide at Bear Lake, an avid hunter, he played tennis, bridge and square danced. He loved supporting the Weber State Wildcats and the SLC Jazz. He enjoyed gardening, his begonias were a joy for many.
He volunteered for curling during the Winter Olympics, and the Winter Paralympics at Snowbasin. He was a significant blood donor at St. Benedict’s Hospital. On April 21, 2018 in La Jolla, California during a ceremony honoring Don Linke’s military service at the Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial, Don said, “... I am humble and grateful for my life and the people who have looked out for me.”
Don assisted many and his grandson Jared was the light of his life. Because Don survived many successful heart procedures, he intended to donate his body for research to the University of Utah but the current world health situation prevents it. Don repeatedly advocated his family make smart financial decisions. He was dedicated, respectful, honest, eloquent, funny, and sincere. And to Don’s family, his most common phrase, stemming from his love for them was to “Beeeeee Careful.”
Surviving are his wife Hazel Ann of South Ogden, daughters Nancy Linke (Richard Patton) of La Jolla, California and Karen (Theodore) Beauregard of Salt Lake City and grandson Jared (Dalila Castro) Beauregard. Surviving sisters Marjorie Scherbinske and Ruth Linke and preceded in death by his brothers Fred and Lester Linke.
Memorials for Don may be sent to Richland Lutheran Church Cemetery Fund, 6143 172nd Ave SE, Walcott, ND; Ogden Valley Adaptive Sports, PO Box 1193, Eden, UT 84310; Dr. Edward Miner Cardiovascular Research/Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute, 5169 S. Cottonwood St. Ste 520, Murray, UT 84107.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.aaronsmortuary.com.
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