Donald L. “Don” Pellegrini, 83, Escanaba, passed away on Sunday, June 25, 2017, at OSF St. Francis Hospital.
He was born April 23, 1934 in Norway, MI, son of Cipriano and Mary (Calcaterra) Pellegrini. Don was raised in the Norway-Vulcan area, graduating high school in 1952. He also graduated from Michigan State University with honors, with a degree in Agriculture.
Don served as a Lieutenant in the Air Force from 1957 until honorably discharged in 1960.
On June 8, 1957, Donald married Patricia J. Hardy. They just celebrated 60 years together.
From 1960 until 1966, Don worked for the Soil Conservation Service, then worked for MSU as an Agricultural Agent for 24 years, retiring in 1990.
While still working full time, Don, together with his wife, Pat grew strawberries on their farm for 38 years, until their son, David took over the farm.
Don loved the outdoors, especially deer hunting and trout fishing, and his hunting trips out west. His family and farming were his joy.
He was a member of Holy Family Church, 3rd and 4th Degree Knights of Columbus, and Blue Army of Our Lady of Fatima. He volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul and was a past member of Delta County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, Rotary and Lions.
Don’s surviving family includes his wife, Patricia of Escanaba; sons, Stephen (Carol) Pellegrini and David (Mary Beth) Pellegrini; daughter, Theresa Pellegrini all of Escanaba; brother, Louis Pellegrini; grandchildren, Traci (Michael) Busick, Jacob Pellegrini, Donald (Carla Norman) Pellegrini, Nicholas (Jenilee) Pellegrini, Nicole (John Czmer) Ladouceur, Lauren Pellegrini, and Lucas Ladouceur; great grandchildren, Joslynn Pellegrini, Elise and Evan Busick, and Jace, Rhett and Paislee Pellegrini.
Don was preceded in death by his parents; son, Robert Pellegrini; and brothers, Henry and Cipriano Pellegrini.
Don was a man of strong faith who loved his family. He will be deeply missed by family and friends.
Visitation will be on Wednesday, June 28th from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Crawford Funeral Home in Escanaba. The Knights of Columbus Rosary will be recited at 3:30 p.m. and parish prayers at 6:30 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be on Thursday, June 29th at 11 a.m. at Holy Family Church in Flat Rock with Rev. Francis Dobrzenski officiating. A meal will follow in the church hall.
Graveside services and military honors will take place on Thursday at Escanaba Twp. Cemetery at 2 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Delta County Cancer Alliance or the Holy Family Church Roof Fund.
The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the Pellegrini family.