In Prineville he was affectionately known as "The Candy Man" and "Papa Don." He was 76 years old.
A graveside service will be held at 1 p.m. Monday, May 5, 2008 at Willamette National Cemetery in Portland, Ore. Memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 10, 2008 at Powell Butte Christian Church in Powell Butte, Ore. Pastor Dan Parks of Prineville Christian Church will officiate.
Don was born in Eugene, Oregon on May 17, 1931, to Chester Neil and Alfreda (Garner) Purkerson.
Don graduated from Coburg High School in 1949. He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corp from 1949 to 1953.
He attained the rank of Sgt. In Korea he was at the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir and was eligible for The Purple Heart for injuries received in there.
Don was a member of The Chosin Few and The Men of Chosin a group of survivors that fought at the Chosin Reservoir.
In Anaheim, Calif., on June 14, 1952 he married Mary Jo Duncan. They moved back to Coburg where he worked farming, He worked in Anaheim, Calif., for a short time then moved to Oregon.
Donald attended University of Oregon where he received a bachelor of science degree in education in 1959 and taught science and math at South Jr. High School in Grants Pass, Ore., in 1959-60. Donald worked as an adult parole and probation officer in Jackson County, Ore., and also worked for Federal Bureau of Investigation in Phoenix and Flagstaff, Ariz., and southern California where he served in the fugitive squad.
In 1966 he moved back to Oregon and went to work for U.S. Forest Service as a federal investigator for Region #6 including, Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana. Moved to Prineville in fall of 1979 and worked for Malheur and Ochoco National Forest before retiring in 1983.
Don was a member and Elder of the Prineville Christian Church and the former F.B.I. Agents Association. He was also involved as a volunteer assistant with the Crook County High School boys and girls basketball teams for many years.
He was known as the "Candy Man or "Papa Don" because he always had candy to share. He loved the outdoors including hunting, fishing and tinkering with old cars.
He is survived by: his wife Mary Jo Purkerson of Prineville and two sons and their wives Mike and Peggy Purkerson of Brownsville, Ore., and Tony and Carla Purkerson of Prineville; one brother Rex Purkerson of Eugene, Ore., and five grandchildren and five great -grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by parents, three brothers and one sister.
Contributions may be made to The Prineville Christian Church, 1685 S.E. Lynn Blvd. Prineville, OR. 97754 or Former Agents of the F.B.I. Foundation; P.O. Box 1027; Quantico, VA. 22134-1027.
Arrangements are entrusted to the care of Prineville Funeral Home.