Don Gillette

Passed away October 6, 2012, at the age of 78.  Don was born June 17, 1934, in Morrice, to Leroy and Alta (Harris) Gillette.  Many will remember him from Gillette Trailer Center a business he owned with his wife of 59 years, Connie.  Prior to opening the dealership in 1973, Don spent 24 years working with his father at Gillette Sand & Gravel in Shaftsburg.  He was a life member of the Masonic Lodge and a former Supply Sergeant in the Michigan National Guard. In his personal life his passions were fishing from their boat “Reel Fun” and working with his hands.  An excellent fabricator, he was proficient with a steel lathe, wood lathe, welder and any woodworking tool he touched.  As a contributor to the community, among other things he and a handful of friends built the ticket booths, concession stand and press box at Haslett High School.

He is survived by his wife, Connie; daughters, Jill (Bill) McKay and Camala (Tom) Kinder; sons, John (Pam) Gillette and Craig Gillette; sister, Sharon Gillette; step-brother, Ron (Ida) Buntin; seven nieces and nephews and is “Papa” to eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild.  Don was a top-notch husband, father, brother and friend memories of how he touched us all are treasures we will keep forever.

The funeral service will be held at 4:00 p.m. Wednesday, October 10, 2012, at the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel. Interment will take place in Glendale Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the funeral home from 3:00 p.m. until service time Wednesday. Memorial contributions may be made to Eaton Community Palliative Care in memory of Don Gillette.

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12 Messages to “Don Gillette

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Chris Barden
October 8, 2012 at 8:12 am

Unfortunately, I did not get to really know Don until just the last few years. We worked on a number of projects together and we made a real effort in helping him become more proficient on his notebook computer so he could stay in touch. He actually got pretty good at navigating and composing email.

During the brief time I became closer to Don and Connie, I was warmed with a true sense of family. I cherished each and every moment I was blessed with Don and will miss him very much.

Sharon Gillette
October 8, 2012 at 11:55 am

Don, my big brother and my friend. I will miss you so much. xoxo

Zinta & Rob Rickert
October 8, 2012 at 12:11 pm

Cam & Family,
We were very saddened to learn of your father’s passing! We are sure he was wonderful father and a man you were so very proud of; his list of accomplishments & passions indicate that!
We believe your loss is Heaven’s gain!

Wayne & Ellie Flood
October 8, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Don will be missed as a good friend and neighbor for many years while our families were growing up. God rest his soul.

Wayne & Ellie Flood
October 8, 2012 at 2:26 pm

Don will be greatly missed by his family and friends. We spent many great times as neighbors and friends while our families were growing up. Our prayers and thoughts are with you all.

Bob & Cathy Woodhull
October 8, 2012 at 2:57 pm

We’ll remember Don as a very funny, kind and generous man. His friendship will be truly missed. Our thoughts and prayers to Connie and family.

Al Pringle
October 8, 2012 at 3:24 pm

Never met the man, but sure heard a lot about him from a proud son.
God can always use another fisherman, and he apparently has another
good one now. Sorry for your loss Craig, and my best wishes to the
rest of the family. I will say a prayer for your dad.

Rich Brook
October 8, 2012 at 7:40 pm

I have great memories of Don from our times at the Haslett Businessmen’s Assoc and working with him at the athletic field projects as part of the boosters club. Thanks Don for being the wonderful example for the rest of us.

The Stanke Family
October 9, 2012 at 2:04 pm

The Stanke’s and Gillettes go way back. Various members of our family enjoyed growing up with the Gillette family, around Haslett. We are sorry for your loss, God Bless.

David R. Bouck
October 9, 2012 at 3:02 pm

As a small part of the Gillette family back in the day, I admired Don for his sense of humor and love of life. He cared deeply for his family, and worked diligently to ensure that theirs was a life fulfilled. My thoughts are with Connie and the rest of the Gillette family…

Joyce (Chambers) Mitchell
October 10, 2012 at 9:42 am

Growing up across the road from the family I have known Don for practically all of my life. Connie was my best friend in HS and is still so to this day. My husband Jim and I have had some great times with them over the years in both Fla. and Mich. Our hearts go out to Connie and the family.
Joyce and Jim Mitchell

Jeff and mom Carol Banning
October 15, 2012 at 11:47 am

We were very saddened to hear of the loss of Don. My parents played cards every Friday night for years while us kids played at their home. We traveled most every winter to Florida and would camp with them in the Keys. Don would rescue us many times after a big snow storm by plowing out portions of Raby road with his front end loader from the sand and gravel business. Most of all I will miss is booming laugh and practical jokes including pushing your thumb into the stick of soft butter when u asked it to be passed! My mom said Don was brilliant and i agree. May God watch over this wonderful man and over our friends th Gillettes. Jeff.


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