Donald Higginbotham

Donald Ray Higginbotham

Wednesday, April 4th, 1934 - Thursday, November 14th, 2019
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Donald Ray Higginbotham went to be with our Lord and Savior on November 14, 2019.

Memorial Service: 11 a.m. Friday, November 22, 2019 at First Baptist Church, 301 S. Center St., Arlington.
Memorials: In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that donations be made in Don’s honor to The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation at or mail donations to Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, P.O. Box 414238, Boston, MA 02241-4238.

He is preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Charlotte Lamanda Higginbotham, his parents Grady and Gladys Higginbotham, his sister Betty Goodwin, his brother Ross Higginbotham, and his beloved grandson, Tevin Wayne Cates.

Don was born April 4, 1934 in a house in Maud, Texas. After many childhood years in Maud, his family moved to New Boston, Texas, and ultimately landed in Texarkana, Texas. In 1951, while attending Arkansas High, he met Lamanda at a church hayride as she was attending the rival Texas High. The two dated even as Don moved to Dallas to secure work after college. Don and Lamanda were married September 10, 1955 in Texarkana, Texas.

In October 1954, Don began what would be a 39-year career at Chance Vought Aircraft. Starting in their Plant Layout Department, he ultimately became Manager of Government Facilities, took a short jump over as Environmental Manager, and back to facilities until he retired. While working at Vought, Don worked hard in night school to secure his BBA in Management from TCU which he completed in 1967.

In 1976, Don became a volunteer as a board member for the Vought Credit Union, which is now Texas Trust Credit Union. During his 43 years as a board member, he made his dearest friends and loved serving the credit union. Even during the last year, when he was unable to make a meeting, Don would listen in by phone. He still wanted to be part of the organization that meant so much to him. Don served as board president for seven years, was president of the Management Club at Vought in 1976, and he was president of the Vought Aircraft Retirees Club for four years.

Of all his accomplishments at work, Don was most proud of his children and his grandchildren. David, Darrel, Duane and Donna kept Don busy as he acted as Boy Scout leader, coach, biggest supporter, and taxi driver to their many activities. Once the grandkids were born, Don’s retirement allowed him numerous opportunities to take the grandkids for “park days” where they would go to 4-5 different city parks in one day as well as many other fun activities.

Don and Lamanda loved to travel, and the fact that they never had a honeymoon was well made up for in their numerous trips. Bahamas, Banff, Canada, New York, San Francisco were just a few of their trips, but Vegas seemed to be their favorite spot. Don loved playing poker, and he’d play for hours while Lamanda stayed on the penny or nickel slots.

Don expanded his community involvement when in 2001 he ran for mayor of Arlington. He secured 28% of the vote, even though he spent less than $300 on his campaign. Don wasn’t necessarily interested in being mayor, he just wanted to make sure that community issues were debated during the election.
Don was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in January 2006. Given just 4 years to live, Don embraced every treatment option and received a stem cell transplant that helped him stay in remission for over 7 years. He still took trips, was an active husband, father and granddad and never let the serious chemo treatments and infusions keep him down. In 2019, Don was diagnosed with melanoma and multi dysplasia syndrome which continued to take a toll on his body. Even the last weeks of his life, he was telling stories, asking how his family was doing, and asking for hugs from his visitors.

Don is survived by his sons Charles David, Darrel Alan, Duane Keith and daughter-law Carla, and his daughter Donna Lea Cates, his grandchildren, Baylee, Dylan, Ally, and Taryn, his brothers, Paul, Larry, and Lewis, and his sister, Jan as well as his family, Sue and Charles Nutt and numerous friends.
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  • Service

    Friday, November 22nd, 2019 | 11:00am
    Friday, November 22nd, 2019 11:00am
    First Baptist Church Arlington
    301 S. Center St.
    ARLINGTON, TX 76010
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Susan Smith, Ted & Karla Walnofer, and other have sent flowers to the family of Donald Ray Higginbotham.
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Susan Smith

Posted at 01:12pm
Don was my dear friend and TXTCU colleague. I will miss him very much.
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Susan Smith purchased flowers and planted a memorial tree for the family of Donald Higginbotham. Send Flowers


Ted & Karla Walnofer

Posted at 12:17pm
Love to Donna, Taryn and family.
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Ted & Karla Walnofer purchased flowers for the family of Donald Higginbotham. Send Flowers


Sam and Mary Lou Laden

Posted at 10:09am
Don was one of Vought’s finest and will be missed by all. Always cheerful and willing to help, Don was a role model for everyone.

Margaret Sweitzer, and Rick & Ann Dorris

Posted at 09:59am
With heartfelt condolences,
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Margaret Sweitzer, and Rick & Ann Dorris purchased flowers for the family of Donald Higginbotham. Send Flowers


David & Natalie Pickney

Posted at 08:28am
Don's dedication, wit and courage in the face recent challenges was truly an inspiration to all of us! Our prayers and love are with you.
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David & Natalie Pickney purchased flowers for the family of Donald Higginbotham. Send Flowers


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