Amherst Magazine
Donald E. Jones '52

It is with sadness that we report that the Rev. Donald E. Jones died on June 16, 2006, at the age of seventy-seven.  He was a native of Springfield, MA, and graduated from Springfield Technical High School and then entered the Naval Academy.  Don resigned from Annapolis after two years and entered Amherst as a junior and soon became a member of Phi Alpha Psi.  He majored in philosophy and psychology.

After graduating from Amherst, Don attended the school of theology at Boston University and was ordained as a minister in the mid-’50s.  He had a student parish at the First Methodist Church in Marlboro, MA, and in 1956, he became the minister of First Methodist Church in Framingham, MA, where he served for eleven years.  In 1967, he turned to teaching and joined the faculty of Dean Junior College in Franklin, MA, where he taught philosophy, religion and psychology and was the coordinator of the Human Services program.  He retired in 1991.

Don met his wife, Patricia Beale, in the summer of 1951 aboard a Windjammer out of Camden, ME.  He was hired as a cook for this vessel, and his grandmother gave him a crash course in cooking shortly before he reported for duty.  Don and Pat were married White Plains, NY, soon after graduation.  Three of the ushers were fraternity brothers: Ed Bunning, Ted Sheftel and Dave Pruyne.

Together Don and Pat enjoyed cross-country trips to enjoy nature through hiking, bicycling and sailing in our national and state parks.  Don’s health began to deteriorate in 1997, and he spent the last seven years of his life in a wheelchair.  However, he remained cheerful, had a positive outlook and kept his sense of humor.  He and Pat celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary by taking their three children, two spouses and three of their grandchildren on a cruise on the Baltic Sea.

Don kept himself well informed about the needs of people throughout the world.  He read online editorials from the Boston Globe, New York Times and the Washington Post.  Additionally, he regularly listened to the PBS “NewsHour” with Jim Lehrer.

We remember Don as a thoughtful, sincere person, always deeply concerned about the needs of others.  He is survived by Pat, his wife of fifty-four years; two sons; a daughter; and four grandchildren.

—James B. Howard ’52

 

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