Don “Donnie” Anderson
December 20, 1972 – April 13, 2022
Don “Donnie” Anderson was born in Salt Lake City, UT December 20, 1972. Shortly after his birth his family moved to Gillette, WY where Don spent his childhood. Don was quick to laugh, adventurous, hardworking, independent and had a wicked sense of humor. Given a motorcycle when he was just 8, he spent nearly every waking minute exploring the fields that surrounded his home. Don never tired of building forts in his backyard. Each fort was an improvement on the last, culminating in his pièce de résistance– a two story monstrosity that blew over shortly after construction.
Don had a job delivering newspapers while in elementary school. He delivered evenings after school and early Sunday morning, often in subzero temperatures. He was flush with cash (compared to his friends) but incredibly generous. He bought candy and movie tickets for his friends as well as providing the neighborhood with a never-ending supply of nails, screws, and fire crackers. As a child Don was an avid sailor, a sportsman, and could perform a handstand while riding his bicycle.
Don was always well liked and was a true and loyal friend. During high school, his local Little Caesars Pizza made the terrible mistake of promoting him to Night Manager. He pulled so many pranks, including phoning other Wyoming franchises and ordering them to shut down early, that he was eventually fired. He loved to sneak out his window at night and cruise the streets of Gillette with friends in his hideous 1974 Ford Torino looking for adventure.
After high school Don attended the South Dakota School of Mines where he graduated with a degree in Mining Engineering. Don served as President of his fraternity, Delta Sigma Phi, and worked Summers as a haul truck driver, on a blasting crew (ultimately earning his Blaster’s License), and as an intern at Wharf Resources in the Black Hills. Don also fell in love with Traci Ball Anderson, who would become his wife. Upon his graduation, Don started his career with Ingersoll Rand.
Don and Traci began their lives together in Plano, TX . It is in Plano that they joyously welcomed their son, Ryan, into their family. The Andersons then moved to Watertown, SD as Don began working for Terex Corporation. Don and Traci gave birth to their beautiful daughter, Alissa, while in Watertown. Don’s career took off with his position as the general manager for Terex Roadbuilding. He ended his career as Vice President of Terex Utilities and Terex Ritz based in Brazil. He toured the world, meeting with customers in South America, Asia, and Europe.
Don adored his children. Alissa shared her father’s passion for building, and they spent many happy hours together in his shop. Don was a font of pride for Ryan. He supported Ryan’s amazing talent as a guitarist by taking beautiful photos during Ryan’s performances, even going so far as to purchase a guitar for himself so they could jam. His children were everything to Don. He loved cooking and baking for them, filming their adventures and triumphs, and marveling in their journey as they grew into the wonderful people they are today.
Don did all he could do to battle the depression that ultimately claimed his life. He stayed with us as long as he was able and, in the end, left us with treasured memories of a most remarkable man.
Don was preceded in death by his beloved mother, Almyra Anderson. We pray he has found the peace that eluded him in life.