Donald Harrison Fitts, 97, of Scottsbluff, died Friday, October 8, 2021, at Heritage Estates in Gering, Nebraska.
The memorial service will be at Salem Congregational Church, 1:00 p.m. Monday, October 25, 2021, with Pastor Dale Brown officiating and participation by various family members. For those attending, the family kindly asks you to please wear a facemask. The service will be livestreamed on Bridgman Funeral Home’s Facebook page. Interment will be in the Gordon Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Scotts Bluff County 4-H Club Chapter. Online condolences may be left at www.bridgmanfuneralhome.com.
Donald was born May 2, 1924, on his father’s birthday, to Harry W. and Blanche (Robinson) Fitts. He was the second baby born at the Methodist Hospital in Scottsbluff, that later became Regional West Medical Center and was honored for the same at its 75th Anniversary. Donald grew up on the home place northeast of Minatare and graduated from Minatare High School where he was active in baseball, basketball, and band.
On June 30, 1946, Don married his Sandhills sweetheart, Yvonne Dahlgren, at The First Church of God, in Gordon, Nebraska. Together, they farmed and raised cattle on the home place northeast of Minatare in the Highland community and later in the Lake Alice Community. He returned to farm the home place in 1966, where he continued farming and raising cattle until his retirement into the early 2000’s. Donald always treasured the long-lasting friendships of both the Lake Alice and Highland communities. He was active in his children’s and grandchildren’s lives, closely following their church, music, sporting, and academic events. He also served on the school boards in both communities along with supporting the local 4-H and FFA chapters. One of his greatest joys was to have his grandchildren out farming with him, learning to set irrigation tubes, and learning to drive the old pickup.
Donald attended the First Church of God from a youngster into his senior years, teaching Sunday School, sponsoring Youth Group, and serving on the church board for many years, especially as treasurer. Donald loved music and enjoyed singing with the church choir, and in duets and quartets. Don & Yvonne hosted many youth retreats and hayrides, often ending up with sing-alongs by the campfire. Donald started every morning with family devotions by reading scripture followed by prayers, providing his family a lifelong gift of faithfulness and stewardship. Don and Yvonne later attended Salem Congregational Church and felt loved and embraced by that congregation.
After moving to Scottsbluff, Donald continued to drive out to the farm nearly every day to assist with the farming and harvests that he loved so much. He also spent several years volunteering at the Farm and Ranch Museum in Gering.
Survivors include his wife of 75 years, Yvonne; four children, Gary (Dee) Fitts of Berthoud, Colorado; Royce Fitts of Gering; Marilyn (Bob) Pahlke of Gering; and Linda (Brian) Pilkington of Scottsbluff; 10 grandchildren, Gina (Greg) Poley; JoDee (Mike) Vidaurri; Ellie (Chris) Fulmer; Shane (JoAnna) Fitts; Ryane Carlin; Jason (Christine) Collopy; Emily Pilkington; Joshua Pilkington; Ashlee (Nick) Kizzire; and Jared Pilkington along with 10 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother, Stuart Fitts, sister, Barbara Brown and great-granddaughter, Deign Yvonne Carlin.