Donald “Don” Kraska
Donald “Don” Kraska, beloved brother, father, grandfather, and friend, left this life to be rejoined with his dear Liz on May 12, 2023 while surrounded by his loving family.
Don was born on November 4, 1947 in Little Falls, MN to Martin and Catherine Kraska. He spent much of his youth in both Minnesota and Wisconsin, the latter guiding him to become an avid, and highly vocal, Green Bay Packers fan. He was often known to belt out his own special song, “Oh Lord it’s hard to be humble when you’re a Green Bay Packers fan” in both celebration of their victories, or just any other random afternoon.
In 1965, Don joined the US Navy and proudly served his country abroad the USS Roosevelt during the Vietnam War. Throughout his life he remained a dedicated countryman and was honored to have his own name appear on the memorial erected in downtown Alexandria.
Don was married three times, and while his love was great for each of his wives, none was as pure as that he shared with his beloved Liz. Theirs was a true love story built on life’s greatest adventures - Harley rides, Arizona winters, and raising his three children, Renee, Todd, and Jason, as well as Liz’s darling Ashley. “Love is worth the time it takes to find” remained their mantra throughout their lives; and the love and dedication they continuously displayed to each other most certainly demonstrated to everyone around them that their mantra rang true.
Don was always the biggest supporter and cheerleader of those he loved. Whether sitting front row at Renee’s plays or celebrating wins with his Rabbits and Bear, Don was always front and center, showering them with praise. But Don was also present in life’s darkest moments, offering a shoulder or extending a hand. When others closed their doors, Don not only opened his, but presented the keys to his very home.
Don is survived by his loving children: Renee (Cindy) Iverson of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Todd Kraska of Alexandria, Jason (Crystal) Kraska of Alexandria; stepdaughter, Ashley Worden of Alexandria; grandchildren: Luci Iverson, Ryland Iverson, Edith Iverson, and Maya Kraska; stepgrandchildren: Trysten Gapp, Vayden Gapp, and Liberty Haack; former wife, Majel (Bill) Freeman; brothers: Marty Kraska, John Kraska, James Kraska, Emil (Rhonda) Kraska; sister, Linda Bartusek; and many nieces, nephews, and a world of friends.
Don was preceded in death by his wife, Elizabeth “Liz” Kraska; first wife, Susan Cummings; special friend, Linda Payonk-Schlichting; parents, Martin and Catherine Kraska; brother, David Kraska; brother-in-law, Ronald “Ronnie” Bartusek; sister-in-law, Jennifer “Jenny” Kraska; as well as a number of friends Don truly regarded as family.
A memorial service will be held Friday, May 19 at 11:00 a.m. at First Lutheran Church in Alexandria with a visitation one hour prior to services. Burial with military honors will be at Kinkead Cemetery.
Anderson Funeral Home in Alexandria is in charge of arrangements for Donald.