Donald Joseph Van Dam, 80, passed away Sunday, March 10, 2013. He was born February 24, 1933 in Dell Rapids, SD to William and Martha Van Dam. He attended St. Mary High School. On May 29, 1956 he was united in marriage to Lila Jean Fossum in Sioux Falls, where the couple lived their entire married life.
Don worked as a painter in Dell Rapids before he joined the Army, serving in the Korean War from 1953-1955. He was a boiler operator at John Morrell and Co from 1955 to 1987 and then worked at Walling Water Management as a sales and service representative. He retired in 2007.
Don volunteered for the Democratic Party and was an avid Nebraska football fan. In addition to playing cards and telling stories, he loved visiting with friends and spending time outdoors. Don was a charter member, usher and greeter at St. Lambert Catholic Church, and he was a member of the VFW and UFCW Local 304A.
Grateful for having shared his life are his children and their families Lt Col (Ret) Blaine Van Dam and Joan of Wichita, KS, Beth and Tim Nelson of Centennial, CO, and Brad and Cindy Van Dam of Washington, DC. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Tyler Nelson, Jack Van Dam and Brett Van Dam, and his sisters, Julie Abrahamson of Sioux Falls, Doris Singer of St. Paul, MN and Rosalie Gannon of Dell Rapids. Don was preceded in death by his wife, parents, four brothers, and seven sisters.
Funeral Mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, March 15, 2013 at St. Lambert Catholic Church in Sioux Falls. Burial with full military honors will be in St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, Dell Rapids. Visitation will be from noon to 5:00 pm Thursday at Heritage Funeral Home and resume at 6:00 pm at the church with a Rosary at 6:45 pm and a Prayer Service at 7:00 pm. www.heritagesfsd.com.