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Donald Orel

Donald Orel

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Donald Orel

RAPID CITY | Donald Orel, 85, passed away on June 26, 2021, at the state hospital in Yankton after battling dementia.

Donald was born on May 13, 1936, to Joe and Anna Orel in Winner and grew up on the family farm near Hamill. In 1954, Donald joined the U.S. Army and became a paratrooper and served with the 11th Airborne Division as a tank gunner.

After leaving the Army, Donald worked on the family farm for a time before getting married and later moving to Spearfish. Here, he worked in the local sawmills for many years.

Donald loved the outdoors and enjoyed hunting, camping and skiing. He traveled extensively throughout the states, always taking a new road he'd never travelled, with his trusty dog at his side. Many will remember him and his dog from his tireless effort picking up trash along Haines Avenue or hiking up Harney Peak.

He is survived by his older brother, Melvin; his children, Brenda (Bob) Moore, Rhonda (Edward) Willis, David Orel, and Derrek (Anne) Orel; 11 grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

Donald was preceded in death by his parents, Joe and Anna; his twin brother, Darrel; and his great-grandson, Elliot Eckhardt.

A Celebration of Life visitation will be at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, July 6, at Kinkade Funeral Chapel in Sturgis, followed by 11 a.m. graveside services, with military honors, at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis.

Condolences may be sent to the family at

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