Donald Ledbetter

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Donald Amos Ledbetter, 80, of Gordonville died Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2011, at Saint Francis Medical Center in Cape Girardeau.

He was born Aug. 14, 1931, in Ullin, Ill., to Amos Alfred and Elsie Margaret Curt Ledbetter. He and Edna Elwilda Bell were married in 1952. She died in December 1972. He then married Dena Joy Manewal on Feb. 9, 1973.

Donald graduated from Ullin High School in 1949 and from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in Vocational Agriculture and Soil Conservation.

He served in the U.S. Navy seven years during the Korean conflict, earning the rank of chief petty officer. He served in the Korean and China Theater. He later served in the U.S. Army National Guard and the Army Reserve for a total of 26 years, retiring as a master sergeant. While in the service he served as a nuclear and biological chemical warfare instructor. He also served as a recruiter.

Donald farmed in the Linn County, Mo., area and worked as a balanced farming agent for the University of Missouri Extension Service and an agent with the Missouri Farm Bureau. He also farmed in the Ullin area and worked for the Soil Conservation Service, retiring in 1994.

He was a member of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Jackson. He was a 4th Degree in the Knights of Columbus, and a member of Altenthal-Joerns American Legion Post 158 in Jackson.

Survivors include his wife, Dena of Gordonville; a son, Mike (Jane) Ledbetter of New Bloomfield, Mo.; five daughters, Lorie (Steve) Brendecke of Riverside, Calif., Rhonda Sisson of San Diego, Amy Thompson of Cape Girardeau, Donna (Don) Aufdenberg of Tilsit, Mary Chalmers of Cape Girardeau; a brother, Harold Richard (Yutaka) Ledbetter of Riverside; 13 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

A memorial mass will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at Immaculate Conception Church, with the Rev. John Harth officiating. The rosary will be recited at 9:30 a.m. Burial will be in New Hope Cemetery in Ullin, with military honors conducted.

Arrangements were handled by Cracraft-Miller Funeral Home in Jackson.