Donald Harris, 1928-2019

Published 1:00 am Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Funeral services for Donald Harris, 91, of Albert Lea will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at Bayview Freeborn Funeral Home, 1415 N. Highway 13 in Albert Lea. The Rev. John Mitchem will officiate. Burial will be at Graceland Cemetery. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the funeral home. Online condolences are welcome at

Donald Harris

Don passed away Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019, at Senior Prairie Cottages in Albert Lea.

Donald Kenneth Harris was born Oct. 12, 1928, to George and Edda (Kasten) Harris in Dundas. He was baptized and confirmed at Holy Cross Episcopal Church in Dundas. He attended elementary school in Dundas and high school in Northfield, where he graduated in 1947. He attended Dunwoody institute training in carpentry. He was employed at Wilson & Co./Farmstead in the machine shop for 41 years.

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He was united in marriage to Veda Hanson on April 28, 1955, at Alden Methodist Church. They purchased their home on Lincoln Avenue in Albert Lea, where they raised three children: Robert, Alan and Paula. They lived there for 61 years, then moved to Thorne Crest Senior Living Community. Don spent the last two years at Senior Prairie Cottages.

On Dec. 7, 1950 he was drafted into the Army at age 22. He received his basic training at Fort Riley, Kansas. He served in Korea as a forward observer in an intelligence and reconnaissance platoon, which was attached to 35th Regimental Headquarters of the 25th Infantry Division. The platoon would camp with the Turkish and French forces, which were a part of the United Nations forces, before going on patrol. Don was honorably discharged as a staff sergeant.

Don grew up on the banks of the Cannon River, where he became an avid outdoorsman. He always looked forward to the fall hunting seasons. He hunted deer for 49 years along with pheasants and ducks. Don was a member of the Boy Scouts in Dundas and encouraged his sons to become members. They each achieved Eagle Scout rank, of which he was very proud. Don enjoyed gardening and books on World War II and the Civil War. He also enjoyed sports — especially the Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Twins and Albert Lea teams. Don always loved a good game of cards and pool. Don and Veda traveled extensively across the country visiting historic sites and national parks. They enjoyed stage plays and made many trips on the senior bus to Chanhassen and the Old Log Theater. He was an active member and served on the board of the Albert Lea Senior Center. He was an active member of United Methodist Church of Albert Lea since 1957.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, LeRoy Harris; and brother-in-law, Roland Hanson.

He is survived by his wife, Veda; children Robert (Mary) of White Bear Lake, Alan (Tera) of Albert Lea and Paula (Steve) Buege of Minneapolis; grandchildren Katherine Harris, Nate Harris, Erica Buege, Michael Harris, Taylor Harris and Joe Buege; and great-grandchild, Hannah Harris.