1915 - 1999


Michael Don
David Weldon
Meredith Ann
Carolyn June
Joan Elizabeth
Stephen Larry

DON'S Grandchildren

Christopher Charles Fess
David Eric Fess
Elizabeth Paige Marion
Gregory Wilson Fess
Jennifer Ann Marion
Kelly Ann Turk
Leslie Louis Turk, Jr.
Meredith Turk Robinette
Michael David Fess
Patrick Dalton Fess
Paul Stephen Fess
Robert Glen Newcomer
Stephanie Fess
Tracey Leigh Newcomer
William David Marion



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Ora's Son - Don Fess

DON FESS, born February 12, 1915  in Allendale, Illinois
          died March 3, 1999 in Magnolia, Arkansas
          married on June 1, 1934 in Magnolia, AR to
Martha Emma Wainwright
          born September 6, 1917 in Baton Rouge, LA
          Sired six children by Martha Emma
They both graduated from Haynesville, LA  High School
Their first home was in Haynesville, Louisiana
The family moved to Magnolia about 1939 where
          they raised their six children
  Marriage eventually ended in divorce
  Don lived in Magnolia for the rest of his life
  Married to
Cleyonne Ware Crump,
          on August 14, 1964  a widow with a grown daughter
          No children by this wife

about 1961

Don as a young man
about 1930

      On February 11, 1941, Don Fess was granted  U.S. Patent #2231440 for a Rotary Engine. A refined version now powers Mazda automobiles and is called the Wankel engine.
    On October 5, 1997, his family dedicated "Window of Ideas" a sculpture to his achievement at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and endowed a scholarship in his name.


              Shortly after World War II, Don left the Ohio Oil Company to form his own electrical contracting company in Magnolia.

         The photo on left was taken about that time. 

         Electrical contracting remained his life's work until he retired.

Newly-weds 1934
Don and Emma

Don . . .
as he graduated from Haynesville
High School

       Don and Cleyonne

(photo taken 1987)

       They were active members of Jackson Street Methodist Church in Magnolia. When relocated, it became Asbury United Methodist Church where Don regularly taught Sunday School.
      Don wrote a book of poems and recorded many memories, songs, and, of course, his favorite jokes on audio cassettes for his children.
      The most repeated comment at his funeral:
"He was a good man!"

Don with Michael, David,
Meredith, and Carolyn
dressed for Sunday School
in September 1946.

"Window of Ideas"
Michael Don Fess,  Sculptor

At the dedication October 5, 1997
Southern Arkansas University, Magnolia, AR

        Don became an avid golfer in the 1950's and hand-built his first golf cart.
         Self-taught, he held the club in a cross-handed manner and could score consistently in the low eighties.

Don and Cleyonne  Photo taken about 1964

Don's Children - photo 1990
Michael, David, Meredith, Carolyn, Joanie, Steve

    DON with his favorite golfing buddy,
Halmon Wilson,
Michael's Father-in-law.
(photo  about  1985)

Don and Cleyonne  Photo taken in the '80s

At Don's request,
everyone sang
his favorite hymn,
"When They Ring
Those Golden Bells"
at his funeral.


Most of Don's grandchildren at his funeral.

2006 REUNION of Don's Children

Meredith, Michael, Carolyn, Joan, David, their mother,
Martha Emma, and Stephen
Photo  taken at Don's Funeral - March 5, 1999

Don's Children -     Michael Don        Meredith Ann       Carolyn June         Joan Elizabeth         Stephen Larry                  Index Page

DON'S Brothers       PAUL   MAX     VAUGHN     GERALD              Sisters   JUNE      EVELYN              Father:  ORA