Donald Carlton Bigelow, 88, was called home on Thursday, April 5, 2018. Don was born on October 31, 1929, in East Longmeadow, Massachusetts to Carlton and Ruth Bigelow. Don's older sister, Doris had requested a kitten for Halloween but got a baby brother instead.
Don served in the U.S. Army for over five years. He went to Hamilton during leave and fell in love with the Bitterroot and one of it's residents Lela Margaret Blodgett. They married on February 14, 1952. He joined the U.S. Air Force, where he served for 15 years.
After leaving the Air Force, Don worked for several local businesses including Hamilton School District before transferring to Missoula County Public Schools. Upon retiring from MCPS, Don again worked several odd jobs, closing out his working career by volunteering as a foster grandparent for Hellgate Elementary.
Family was very important to Don and he was very proud of his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.
Don was preceded in death by his parents, his loving wife Lela, three brothers and a sister. Surviving Don is his brother Jack (Judy) Bigelow, brothers-in-law Max Blodgett, Ed Blodgett (Doris), sister-in-law Marilyn Bigelow. His children Gary (Cathy) Bigelow, Deb Bigelow, Jacque (Danny) Duke, Joni (Gary) Lancaster, Jason Bigelow, Jacci (Kenny) Collins, 15 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren, 3 great-great-grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews and some special friends.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 14, 2018, at Garden City Funeral Home in Missoula. Reception to follow. Internment will be at a later date at the Blodgett Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Blodgett Cemetery, 2327 Agnes Street, Missoula, MT 59801.