Donald H. Crandall

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Donald Harry Crandall, son of Marjorie (Ludlow) and Mason Crandall, passed away October 19, 2021, at the age of 92. He had been in declining health for the past three years.

Don was born in Homer, Michigan, on August 23, 1929. He had five siblings; Richard, Lawrence, Wayne, Virginia, and Dorothy, who all preceded him in death.

The Crandall family has always been loving and supportive and enjoyed many family reunions on the family property along the Kalamazoo River.

Don graduated from Homer High School and Michigan State University. He received an additional administrative advanced degree from Michigan State University (MA) to complement his continuing work in Natural Resources and Agriculture. He was then accepted into the University of Michigan’s Leadership Development Program and completed that work in 1967.

Don moved to Gaylord in 1959 as the Agriculture Teacher and later became Director of Vocational Education at Gaylord High School. He was always passionate about his work with the FFA (Future Farmers of America) and his Adult Education experiences. He worked tirelessly at regional and state levels to improve Agricultural Education in Michigan. When he was first hired into the Ag program, he worked 12 months of the year with his students and their farm projects. He was recognized for his outstanding work by the state as an “Honorary State Farmer.”

Don was also passionate about the Boy Scouts. He and two of his brothers received the Eagle Scout Degree at the same time. While in Gaylord, he became a Boy Scout Leader for several years. Don served on the Manpower Regional Consortium for many years overseeing many projects for federal support throughout the area. He was a member of Rotary International and many committees at the First Congregational Church.

Don married (Mary) Helen Scott in 1967.

He is survived by his wife, Helen; children, Jerry, Shirley (Howard), Jen (Sean), Jason, and Mischelle (Jean); seven (7) grandchildren, five (5) great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Don was preceded in death by all his siblings. Don and his first wife, Vada Jinkerson Barstow, lost three boys: Mason (1959), Thomas (1957), and William, (1952) to a rare genetic disease.

The family is grateful to Hospice of Michigan and ComForCare for their support during the past few months of Don’s life.

A memorial service for Donald will be held Tuesday, October 26, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. at the First Congregational Church UCC, in Gaylord, MI. Visitation will be held from 9:30 a.m.-11:00 a.m. in the church Parish House.

The services will be live streamed on the church’s Facebook page. It can be viewed by following the link below Don’s picture.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Gaylord First Congregational Church UCC at 218 W Second Street, Gaylord, MI 49735, or the Crandall Scholarship Fund through Otsego Community Foundation, PO Box 344, Gaylord, MI 49734.

Arrangements were entrusted to Nelson Funeral Home and Cremation Service, PO Box 1548, Gaylord, MI 49734.

13 comments on “Donald H. Crandall”

  1. One of the first teachers I met when I was hired at Gaylord High School. Anyone who knew Don got to hear his opinion on about anything and got an education in Crandallisms.
    Don was sure one of a kind and will be remembered by family, friends, students, and fellow teachers. “Farmer Don” you had a great ride!
    Mike Flinn

  2. Don was a fantastic teacher and a person in general. It is not only a great loss for the family, but the community
    also. My thoughts and prayers are with the family at this sad time.

    1. Helen & family,
      Our hearts break hearing of this news. Mr. Don kept so many of us on our toes with his quick wit & humor. He will be missed greatly by so many.

  3. Mr. Crandall, Don, Farmer Don, you will be missed. We’ve had some good times as teacher and friends.
    Rest in peace my friend. My thoughts and prayers to your family.

  4. His smile said it all. Don’s life accomplishments and commitments are awesome to read. I am blessed to have know a man who appreciated life and shared it to the fullest. Let the celebration begin! My best to Helen and especially his children, may they realize the wonder of their dad and grandpa. Rest in Eternal Peace my friend.

  5. Our thoughts are with the family. So sorry to hear of your loss. Don was always so kind and nice. Made my school experience fun!

  6. Mr. Crandall was a great teacher.
    He showed us how to drive and use a skidder, pole saws, chain saws and other cool things.
    He will surely be missed by anyone that knew him.
    RIP Don

    Mark Hansen

  7. Don was such a great guy. Knew him most of my life. I’ll never forget when he hosted get togethers with some of the men teachers at the school system, in his garage on McCoy Road. I was a custodian while working my way through college. Always had an invitation to join and it was always a great time. I learned a lot from him while I also worked on the grounds for the system. Don will be missed and I am thankful I knew him! Praying for family and friends.

  8. Melissa Glasser-Edwards

    What an amazing life! May your happy memories bring you some peace & comfort as you remember & celebrate his life. Thinking of all of you. ❤️

  9. Condolences to Don’s family. Helen, I am so sorry for your loss. May you find peace reflecting on happy memories you two shared over many years.
    Grief has no time, but know many friends are here to help you through the following days and weeks.
    Sending prayers to you and your family.

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