Born On: November 23, 1932

Passed On: February 16, 2019

Donald G. Farber

This is a memorial for Donald Gene Farber, born November 23, 1932. Don passed away, unexpectedly at his residence in Muskegon, MI on February 16, 2019.

Don was born in Muskegon County where he resided for the past 86 years. He was born to Francis Floyd Farber and Winnie Vanderwest. He had 6 siblings: Leonard, Janis, Albert, Katherine, Marlene and Lorene. The family resided together in Muskegon, Heights, MI.

Don went to school through the 8th grade, when he dropped out, got a paper route and help support the family. Times were tough then. In his younger days, Don enjoyed motorcycling, snowmobiling, ice-fishing, and hunting.

In 1950 he decided to serve his country and enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he served for 3 years through the Korean War.

Don is survived by 4 natural children: Randy Farber, Rhonda Farber (Crawford), Robin Farber (DeKorne), Renee Farber, Kim Farber (deceased) and Matthew Farber (deceased), and 4 step children: Richard Baatz, Gene Baatz, Connie Baatz (McPheron) and Linda Baatz. Don has 23 grandchildren, 26 great-grandchildren and many more who called him grandpa, dad and friend; along with many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Don is preceded in death by his late wife of 25 years, Betty Lou (Rock) Farber, his siblings Janice, Katherine, Leonard, Albert and his two sons- Kim and Matthew.

Don was employed as a machinist at Dresser Shaw Box and Crane for almost 20 years.

Don was a wonderful person. He loved to work outside in the yard and in his garden and spent many hours tending both. He was an avid fisherman and enjoyed any type of fishing. He would can suckers and call it, “Poor Man’s Salmon”. You could always find him out in any fishing hole-weather permitting-with whoever would go with him or take him. He didn’t buy his bait either; but went nightcrawler hunting and always had a handful of bait.

Don also enjoyed spending anytime he could with his children. He would take them camping, and boating in the summer. I believe we all learned how to swim by him throwing us over the edge of the boat. Yep-we did actually swim! Oh what fun we had in the summers. He spent many summers camping up in Traverse City area, where we would stop along the way, at the cherry orchards and have the children go out and grab as many cherries as you could carry, I don’t think we ever went to Traverse City without stopping along the side of the road robbing cherries. Don never hesitated if one of his nieces or nephews or one of our friends wanted to go with us-it was the more the merrier-Oh how he loved us children.

In the winter he would wake his children up, after he got home from work, and we knew it was TIME TO PLAY. We would go out after midnight and play in the snow, him pulling us behind him, on our sleds, while he drove. It was a different time then. We would spend hours on the slopes until our fingers and toes were frozen.

Don loved to play practical jokes on people and could just as easily take a joke as well as give one. After all; we all survived the duct tape, oil-based paint on our faces and the nail polish on our skin. It was just a part of growing up with dad. He even nailed the window shut on one of us, when we decided to sneak out at night. Yep-couldn’t get back in. He always taught us to have fun, take a joke, give a joke, but never destroy or hurt another in the process.

He was an exceptional human being. He believed in honesty. He was a Christian man who held onto his faith-even through difficult, trying times. He did not speak ill of people, but always had a way to justify people’s bad actions and decisions. He believed in forgiveness and gave it freely-even to those who didn’t deserve it.

Don had an open door policy for anyone who needed a place to stay, was down on their luck, needed food or shelter. He didn’t discriminate but believed that was what we were put here on this earth for: to help others. There was always room for 1 more; whether it was to cram them into the camper, van or any other vehicle. All was welcome.

Don enjoyed getting together with family and friends to play Euchre, Cribbage, Hand & Foot, Uno, dice, or any other game that we could think of.

Don loved animals too. His kind, gentle spirit was a given sign to his devotion to his pets. His dog Buddy is missing him terribly.

Don had a huge, gentle, wise heart with soothing words. He had the best advice anyone could give and he was always there to lend a helping hand. He could fix or rig anything to get it operating.

He is deeply missed by all. We lost a very special man who touched the lives of hundreds of people. How could we ever forget such a wonderful, beautiful person.

We love you dad.

The Memorial Service will be at  First Congregational Church of Fruitport, 3212 E. Pontaluna Rd. in Fruitport, on March  2,  2019 at 11:00 A.M. with Pastor Mike Scott officiating.

Arrangements by Shoreline Memorial Services of Muskegon 231-722-5050


Memorial Service Information

First Congregational Church of Fruitport
3212 E. Pontaluna Rd.
Fruitport, Michigan 49415

Date: Saturday, March 02, 2019
Time: 11:00 AM

15 thoughts on “Donald G. Farber

  1. Lonny and Jessica Gomez

    Don was a very caring, loving and generous man. He welcomed our family with open arms and when I’d see him, he’d smile and say “Why don’t yas come by more often?” He was a true blessing to have known him and he will be greatly missed by many. Especially our grandkids, who loved to run down the hallway to see him every chance they got! The family get togethers in the yard were so much fun! Lonny went to school with some of Don’s kids and even has memories from years ago. God called him home and even though we weren’t ready, we have to be at peace and happy for the wonderful, happy life he lived. Please accept our prayers and condolences for the entire family.

  2. Bronson

    Grandpa, I’m sorry for missing out on so much time with you as I grew older. Someday, we’ll have a smoke while drinking coffee on that boat, reeling in a big one…RIP young man, you’ll be missed by many.

  3. Shelly Hale

    He was a wonderful person who welcomed me to the family I enjoyed the outings and cards and just everyday life u will always be in my heart hope u and mom are together again love miss u both so much . My heart goes out to family and friends

  4. Mark Mcnarland

    As the days and weeks pass, as you return to lifes routine , may you continue to feel comforted by the love and support of family and friends ..

  5. Jim Russell

    my fishing yard sale buddy sure was fun getting those apples too with you thank you so much for all you did for me and others my love is with you forever Dad

  6. Linda

    Robin & family when I saw your father’s name my heart broke for you. Happy you have many memories that will be shared for years to come.

  7. Debbie matthews

    Sorry bout your loss renee farber /gene baatz.and all the kids, he was a good man would help anyone out prayers and hugs

    1. Tina Housler(zavitz)

      So sorry to hear about Don passing he was a friend of the family my was a friend of. My mother Phyllis Zavitz was his friend was a great person .i have memeries of him he will be miss .and loved by many. RIP Donald love Tina Housler(Zavitz)

  8. Rhonda Crawford

    I love you dad. You were the best mother and father any kid could have. I can’t even begin to list the many ways you will be missed. All I am, is due to your beautiful, soul. I will cherish and hold tightly your love, and continue to pass it on to my loved ones.

  9. Donald Riegler

    To the family and all that were touched my Don’s life. Truly miss him and prayers to all. We have had so many great memories and they all make me smile. Don is one in a million and he truly will be missed. He always had time for all and would give the shirt off his back!

  10. Warren Staelens

    Don Farber used to work for me as a siding applicater when i owned my own co. my condolances go out to his family, sincerly,Warren Staelens

  11. Jonathon M Myers

    My deepest Condolences to the Farber Family. My Prayers and thoughts are with all of you through this time!


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