Long-time Lethbridge resident DONALD “DON” MILTON OLSON, beloved husband to Rosemarie (née Taylor) Olson for the past 68 years, passed away peacefully at Chinook Regional Hospital on Tuesday, April 18, 2023, with the family who were the constant centre of his life, at his side until his final journey began. He was 93 years of age.
Besides his loving wife Rosemarie, he is survived by his daughter Lori (Trever Miller) Olson, daughter-in-law Deb Olson and grandson Wyatt Olson (son of Deb and the forever-mourned Jeffrey Olson, who predeceased his Dad in 2019), all residents of Lethbridge; five surviving siblings: brothers Ron Olson, Glenn (Maureen) Olson, and Murray (Judi) Olson, all of Calgary; sisters Fay (Don Vickery) Olson of Toronto, and Beth (Ross) Hannan of Lethbridge.
Don was predeceased by his sister Lois Watson of Federal Way, Washington in 2007.
Born in Delisle, Saskatchewan in 1929, Don was just 14 years old when his parents, Nora and Horace ‘Bob’ Olson and their family of (then) six children left their Fenwood, Saskatchewan roots behind to move to Lethbridge and the promise of construction work for his dad on the prisoner-of-war camp being built there. It was the small-town farm boy’s first experience attending a city school, just walking distance from home, after his earliest education in Saskatchewan when he and his little brother Ron doubled-up on horseback, rain or shine, as necessary transportation to the prairie schoolhouse where they were students. Don attended the Lethbridge Collegiate Institute, and spent the first few years of adulthood toiling as a CPR fireman, before settling into what was to become a 30-year stint with the Alberta Liquor Control Board in both Calgary and Lethbridge, and management postings to each of the three ALCB stores in Lethbridge before retiring.
After retiring, Don became a dedicated volunteer, fundraiser, and a well-known face behind the counter at the Interfaith Foodbank in Lethbridge, two days a week, for what was to become another 30 years of commitment which came to a close only when COVID-19 protocols dictated the lockdown that prevented continuing operation. He was a long-time board member and until recently, an active participant in the 60+ Social Club of Lethbridge.
In keeping with his wishes, Don has been cremated. A Celebration of Life will be held at CORNERSTONE FUNERAL HOME, 2825 – 32 Street South, Lethbridge, AB on Thursday, April 27, 2023 at 2:30 PM with Father Roque Pereira officiating. The Celebration of Life will be live-streamed and may be viewed through Don’s obituary on the Cornerstone website.
In lieu of flowers and in memory of Don, donations can be made to the Interfaith Food Bank (interfaithfoodbank.ca) or a charity of one’s choice.