Donald J. Buffington
Donald J. Buffington died peacefully at the Montana Veteran’s Home in Columbia Falls, December 20, 2016. He was born September 20, 1929, in Ft. Benton, Montana, the son of Q.R. (Rufe) and Alvina Schrupp Buffington. He and his brothers, Norman and Phillip, grew up on the family ranch south of Chester, where Don farmed and raised cattle for many years.
Don graduated from Chester High School in 1948 and joined the Marine Corps Reserve in Shelby, Mt., on November 20, 1949. He served with the 1st Marines in the Wonsan-Hungham-Chosin Campaign, Northern Korea in 1950 and was discharged from the Marine Corps in Sept., 1952, as a Corporal. Always a Marine, Don was a life member of both the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion. He enjoyed the camaraderie of fellow veterans and felt it a duty and a privilege to participate in an honor guard. He served in many positions at local and state levels, then as Department of Montana American Legion Commander. In 1995, he was highly honored to be chosen to represent the state of Montana at the dedication of the Korean War Memorial in Washington D.C. His fiercely patriotic love for his country, his flag, and his beloved Marine Corps has been passed on to present generations.
He will be remembered for his story-telling, his voracious love for reading, enjoying military history, the expeditions of Lewis and Clark and the history of Montana and its people.
Don was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Phillip. He is survived by his brother, Norman and family, Phillip’s children and widow, Anke. Don is also survived by his wife, Peggy, and her children, Estelle, Joe and Roy and their families; his children Marie, Douglas, Lee Ann, Sharon and Gary and their families; his former wife, Jean, and her children Marvin, Donald, Diane and Rita, whom he loved and raised as his own; and his first wife, Evelyn. Don had many grandchildren and great grandchildren, creating countless memories with them all. Don maintained enduring bonds with his cousins and extended family, always enjoying the Buffington and Schrupp reunions.
He will be remembered by his many Legion friends and his comrades of the Chosin Few organization. Don was surely one of a kind. Semper Fi.
Don’s family would like to thank everyone from the director, Helen, to each and every one of the nurses and staff at the Montana Veteran’s Home in Columbia Falls, and know how much we appreciate the time, care, kindness, and love shown in so many ways during his time with them. They treated Don like family and showed deep concern and compassion for him and for us all. They are very special people.
A memorial service with scattering of ashes will be scheduled for the spring. It will take place at the family farm and we will welcome all neighbors and friends.Posted: by OverlieP