Donald George

Donald Haydon George Sr.

Thursday, November 25th, 1926 - Monday, June 1st, 2020
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Donald Haydon George of Reedville, Virginia passed away peacefully on 06/01/2020 at his home. He was born on 11/25/1926 in Fairport, Virginia, to the late Captain Ira George and Inez George. Following in the footsteps of his father and uncles, Donald pursued work at sea from an early age, sailing aboard the deck boat Dudley, coastal freight boat Armistice, and the menhaden steamers Mermantau and Shoal Harbor, all before graduating high school. After graduation from Reedville High School in 1944, Donald immediately enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving as a signalman for the remainder of WWII aboard USS Farquhar (DE-139). Upon his honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy in 1946, Donald attended Randolph Macon College, graduating in 1950. While in college, he continued to sail as mate aboard menhaden steamers during his summers at home. Donald spent his professional career with the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Dahlgren, Virginia serving for 38 years as a naval weapons development expert, receiving numerous awards and commendations. While working at NSWC Dahlgren, Donald volunteered as a civilian observer in the combat zone in Vietnam, developing weapons tactics for US forces. Upon his retirement in 1983, Donald spent his time with his family, fishing, gardening, watching menhaden boats, supporting the Reedville Fisherman’s Museum, and fixing anything and everything that needed repair.
Donald is survived by his sons, Donald Haydon “Donny” George, Jr. of Fairport, Virginia, and William Courtney “Billy” George and daughter-in-law Debbie of Chesterfield, Virginia, and his sister-in-law Nell Carter Courtney of Richmond, Virginia. He is survived by three grandsons, Donald Greene, Jason Greene, and Kevin Greene, all of Suffolk, Virginia, and two granddaughters, Kati Leigh Frye of Woodbridge, Virginia, and Kendall Knickerbocker of, Chesterfield, Virginia. He is also survived by two great-grandsons, Kannon and Hudson, two great-granddaughters, Avery and Juliette, his nephew Bobby George, niece Audrey Pretlow Mitchell and husband Steve, and numerous nieces and nephews. Donald is preceded in passing by his loving wife, Jane Courtney George of Kinsale, Virginia, his beloved daughter, Beverley George Greene, of Suffolk, Virginia, his brothers Ira, Robert, and Cullen, and his sisters Audrey and Kaye.
He was a patriot, U.S. Navy Sailor, commercial fisherman, civil servant, Mason, loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, and a friend to many. He will be dearly missed.

A private graveside service will be held at Roseland Cemetery, Reedville.
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Service Details

  • Interment

    Roseland Cemetery
    Route 360
    Reedville, Virginia
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Private Condolence
Sgt. Lonnie Ott Unit 89 and Barbara and Stone sent flowers to the family of Donald Haydon George Sr.
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Timothy Jerow

Posted at 10:37am
I grew up next door to Mr. George when our family moved to Dahlgren in 1960. He and Mrs. George and my parents were great friends. Mr. George was a waterman and loved duck hunting. I remember many days watching him head to the docks to go out on his boat. As we all grew up we all learned things from every parent in the neighborhood. I remember one time when we had chickens Mr. George showed us how to butcher the chickens and yes taught us that we had to close the bag quickly to keep the chicken from running away!! We found out chickens could run,, that day !! Many evenings Mr & Mrs. George would sit out with my parents in the gazebo out in the back yard and chat and just enjoy. I remember the time he went to Vietnam and all of us prayed for his safe return. I have so many fond memories of Mr. George that I could fill a book. I am very sorry to hear of his passing. He had a fantastic life and lived it to the fullest.

Kathy (and John) Elsden

Posted at 08:32am
I met Donald shortly after moving to Reedville in 2002. We worked together on the Reedville Fishermen's Museum exhibit and education committees. It was apparent from day one that Donald was the resident expert on everything Menhaden and Boat related. He was quiet and a little hard to get to know, but he was kind and held such a wealth of information. I wanted so to be his friend, then one day he said Hi to me before I had a chance to greet him. What a joyous moment that was for me--sounds silly, but from that moment on our friendship just got stronger and stronger.
Everyday Donald would pedal his bicycle to the museum, leave it up against the tree and put in a good morning of work on exhibits, archives, or with education groups. AND everyday he would get back on that bike and pedal home for lunch at noon. Jane insisted--she too was wonderful.
The years flew by, took their toll in a number of ways, and Donald always rose to another day. Until now. I think everyone who knew Donald will miss him, I hope we all took time to learn from him and will somehow carry his spirit forward.
He left a big footprint.
My condolences to Donny, Billy and everyone else who feels the loss.

Kim Nance

Posted at 03:49am
Donald George (Uncle Donald) was my fathers best friend They both were in the Navy then went to college and then landed at The Naval base at Dahlgren working as bachelors. They roomed together on base in a dorm and then in a small house on Potomac Drive until they both married. After they married they lived on base and had children. Then Uncle Donald built a home on
Gordon Drove and soon after My parents built
one next door. And the fun began. Uncle Donald
had 3 children and my dad had 4 girls. We were family but not by blood - but much more.
After Their kids left home and married and went in the Military (Donny). they spent most weekends helping them do anything they needed. They Never went on vacations, they just helped their kids with anything and everything. They loved their kids so much.

My mother got oral cancel and died after Over a horrible year of suffering . Aunt jane and Unc Always came back and were there for all of us.
Four years later Dad passed from Prostate cancer. They came home from
Reedville immediately. Aunt Jane brought over mint lemonade Tea
Uncle Donald helped me settle my Dads estate.
Aunt Jane and Uncle Donald were always there for our family. Uncle Donald helped me So much after my parents passed. I was alone with my 3 children and my 3 sisters and families had moved years before. He and Aunt Jane would come by just like they did at my parents (not for long - they had a timeframe).
I loved them both with all my heart and soul.
I am happy they are in a much better place and with each other and Bev again. ❤️❤️❤️

Trudy Harris

Posted at 08:32pm
Billy and family,
I am so very sorry for your loss. I enjoyed talking with your father at Kendall's wedding. He was a sweet man. You are in my thoughts and prayers during this time. Trudy Harris

Sgt. Lonnie Ott Unit 89

Posted at 03:02pm
Thank you for your service. I worked with your son Billy and his moral values is a living testament to the values you instilled into him.
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