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Donald W. Paulsen

Donald W. Paulsen

Donald W. Paulsen, 89, went to be with the Lord following a brief illness in Rogue Valley Medical Center on Friday, Nov. 20, 2009.

He was born August 4, 1920, in Egeland, N.D., to Edward L. and Helen Sand Paulsen. Don graduated from Egeland High School in 1938 and later attended North Dakota Agricultural College for two years. For the adventure, Don and his best friend decided to hitchhike across country to Los Angeles. After a few months of sleeping on park benches he secured a job at Lockheed Aircraft Company.

Don married Irene Weixel from Wishek, N.D. on June 21, 1941, in Glendale, Calif. In March 1943, some months after their daughter Connie was born, Uncle Sam called him into service. He joined the Army Air Corp where he served as an aircraft mechanic the last months of the war at I.E. Shima, Okinawa. After returning from the service he brought his young family on a slow moving milk train to Medford, Ore., as his parents and North Dakota relatives had settled in and around the Rogue Valley.

Don spent much of adult life as a businessman in Central Point. He and his partner Martin Gates opened Paulsen & Gates Thrift Market in 1947, which evolved into Paulsen & Gates Appliance in 1963.

In his retirement years Don enjoyed fishing, traveling, gardening, fixing things, and feeding and watching the birds in his yard. He was a member of the Westminister Presbyterian Church after previously being a long-time member of the Medford First Baptist Church. He also was a member of VFW Post 1833 (Central Point) serving as Past Post Commander in 1953-54 and honored with a 60 year membership badge.

Survivors include his three daughters, Connie (Bob) Thrush, of Bandon, Ore., Diane Paulsen, of Medford, Ore., and Dawn (Joe) Degenhart, of Encinitas, Calif.; grandsons, Troy Paulsen Thrush, of Bandon, Ore. and Justin Donald Kendall, of Palm Springs, Calif.; nieces, Rita Hyatt, of Central Point, Ore., Janice Becker and Helen Johnson of North Dakota. He also leaves his special companion, Dorene L. Herron. Two grandsons, Todd R. Thrush and Timothy J. Thrush, preceded him in death, as well as Irene, his wife of 59 years.

A graveside service will be held Wednesday, November 25 at 2:00 P.M. at Siskiyou Memorial Park, Medford.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to

the Medford Gospel Mission or a charity of your choice.

Donald W. Paulsen