Nature 40

Donald A. MacGregor

December 2, 1931 ~ November 29, 2020 (age 88)


Donald A. MacGregor, age 88, of Glenwood, and formerly of Red Lake Falls and Tyler, died Sunday, November 29, 2020, at Glenwood Village Care Center. Due to the Covid-19 restrictions currently in place, a private family graveside service, followed by interment, will take place at Riverside Cemetery in Moorhead. The officiant will be Pastor Timothy Magill of St. John's Lutheran Church in Villard. Once the restrictions have been lifted and it's safe to gather again, a date and time for a public memorial service celebrating Donald's faith and life will be announced. Arrangements are with the Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home in Glenwood.

Donald Arthur MacGregor, the son of William H. and Winnifred (Froehlich) MacGregor, was born on December 2, 1931, on his grandparent’s farm near Bertha, Minnesota. He was raised on the family farm near Sabin and then south of Moorhead. He attended country school at Clearview School in rural Clay County. He graduated from Moorhead High School in 1949. After high school, Donald furthered his education attending Moorhead State Teacher’s College, graduating in 1953. In September of 1953, he entered the United States Army, serving in the finance corps in Fort Drum, NY and Nurnberg, Germany. After his honorable discharge, he taught junior high math and science in Henning, Minnesota. In January 1957, Donald accepted a position with Boeing in Seattle as a computer engineer. As he liked to say, “Those were the days when a computer filled a room.” He was part of a team that wrote programs for testing several aircrafts including the Boeing 707, 720 and 727. While living in Seattle, Donald met Esther Johanne Brudie at the church where they both taught Sunday school. Donald and Esther were married July 5, 1958 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Kirkland, Washington.

Donald’s last position at Boeing was as a research analyst. In August 1969, he left Boeing to pursue a teaching opportunity at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, IL. This new position enabled him to combine his vast computer science expertise with his passion for teaching students. In 1972, he accepted a teaching position at the University of Minnesota - Crookston (UMC), where he developed the business computer curriculum and the computer center. He received his Master of Science in computational mathematics in 1976 after completing course work at Northern Illinois University and Bemidji State University. Donald retired from UMC in January of 1994.

Donald and Esther were blessed with four children, which they raised while living in Burien and Kent Washington, Wheaton and West Chicago, Illinois and Red Lake Falls, Minnesota. After retirement, they moved to Tyler and then Glenwood. Donald and Esther shared 57 years of marriage before Esther passed away in 2016.

Donald was active in the churches he was a member of; serving as Sunday school teacher, Sunday school superintendent, secretary, president and elder. Most recently he was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Villard. Donald loved farm life. While living in Red Lake Falls, he and Esther had cattle, chicken, ducks, rabbits and a large garden with strawberries and raspberries. For a time, he farmed their land and collected tractors, big and small. Donald also enjoyed building metal model cars. He passed away Sunday, November 29, 2020 at the Glenwood Retirement Village in Glenwood, just three days shy of his 89th birthday.

Donald is survived by his sons: Steve (Lori) of Plainview, NE, Phil (Barb) of Kalispell, MT, and Keith (Wendy) of Salem, OR; daughter, Anne (Jan Gordon) Paulson of Glenwood; grandchildren: Sondra (Todd) Kirckof, Erin (John) Fox, Laura Paulson, Matt Paulson, Nick (Kelli) MacGregor, Michelle (Kortny) Schramm, Sarah (Skyler) Knust, Sophie MacGregor, Erika (Tim) Rehbein, Nathan MacGregor, Bryce MacGregor, Katterlea MacGregor; great-grandchildren: Ben and Charlotte Kirckof, Cam Carlson, Jay Schramm, Jonas and Hadley Rehbein; brothers: Bob (Mary), Neil (Dell), Dick (Diane); sister, Pat (Gene) Thompson; sister-in-law, Shirley MacGregor; brother-in-law, David Fisher; nieces, nephews other relatives and friends.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Esther; brother, Bill, sisters-in-law, Joyce MacGregor and Irene Fisher; and sister and brother-in-law, Alice and Al Wright.

Donald’s family would like to thank those that helped care for him, including Dr. Thomas Haus, Daryl Klous at the Villa, Glacial Ridge Homecare, especially Sandy Cooley, and everyone at the Glenwood Retirement Village.

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