March 8, 1947-Oct. 20, 2018
John Donald McPherson Jr., 71, passed away in Eugene, Oregon on Oct. 20, 2018 from complications of diabetes. Born March 8, 1947 in Butte, Montana to John and Dolly McPherson, he was Donnie to his siblings, Dad to his girls, and John, Mac, or Don to friends, coworkers and family.
After graduating from Butte High in 1965, he joined the U.S. Navy and served two tours in Vietnam aboard the USS Osbourne as a Machinist’s Mate. Upon his return from the Navy, Don became a Butte police officer, serving the citizens of Butte for 23 years, and rising to the rank of lieutenant before retiring. He then was elected sheriff of Butte Silver-Bow for two terms. Don had been a member of the Boulevard Volunteer Fire Department, Silver Bow Kiwanis, Butte Jaycees and volunteered for the American Red Cross.
While serving with the Butte-Silver Bow law enforcement his accomplishments were — starting Crimestoppers in Butte, working with Brad Belke and Dick McLeod in assisting Jim and Margie Thompson when they started the Thompson Food Drive, implemented computerized records, upgraded the 911 system, started the School Resource Officer Program, and many others. Upon his retirement he said "It has been my honor, privilege, and pleasure to have served the citizens of Butte in my long and eventful career."
Shortly after retiring Don relocated to Eugene, Oregon where he managed a mobile home park for his remaining years. Don was a loving and fun brother, never missing an opportunity to remind us that he was Mom's favorite! His daughters, Marissa and Jennifer were the lights of his life.
Don was preceded in death by his parents, John and Dolly and his infant brother, Ronnie.
Don is survived by his daughters, Marissa McPherson of Eugene, Oregon, and Jennifer McPherson of Vista, California; stepson, Phil Kohler and family of Bozeman; stepdaughter, Danelle Furst and family of Butte; sisters and brother-in-law, Sandi and Leroy Seccomb of Butte, Sue MacPherson of Butte, and Sally Harrington of Portland, Oregon; brother and sister-in-law, Dave and Cathy (Cashell) McPherson of Butte, and many nieces and nephews of Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon.
We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to Dan and Doreen Wilson for the love, friendship and care they have given Don over the years. Don was truly fortunate to have the Wilsons in his life.
The Funeral Mass will be celebrated Saturday morning Nov, 3, 2018 at St. Patrick's Church in Butte. Friends may call beginning at 10 a.m. and Mass will follow at 11 a.m. Rite of Committal will be in Mount Moriah Cemetery with Military Honors accorded by the United Veterans Council.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Butte Emergency Food Bank, Butte Police Protective Association or charity of donor's choice.
Axelson Alternative Cremation is privileged to serve The McPherson Family.