Ronald Keith Donelson, 75, of Wood River, died at 12:08 a.m. Wednesday, March 3, 2016, at his residence.
Born March 18, 1940, in Mulberry Grove, he was the son of Clifford C. and Ida Mae (Schoning) Donelson.
A Vietnam War veteran, he served in the U.S. Navy for 8 years, then in the U.S. Army for 12 years, retiring in 1976 as a Chief Warrant Officer.
Ronald was an avid bagpipe player and member of the San Antonio Pipes and Drums.
In May of 1958, he married Betty Jean Gates, who preceded him in death in 2003. On Sept. 4, 2004, he married Jackie L. (Powers) Sparks. She survives.
Surviving also are 13 children: sons, Tim Donelson, Don Donelson, Jerry Kennedy, Jesse Gates, Perry Sparks, Jason Sparks and Tom Donelson; daughters, Ronda Killen, Jenny Donelson, Connie Myrick, Nancy Worrall, Sherry Fischer and Dayna Herndon; 36 grandchildren; 26 great-grandchildren; brothers, Steve Donelson and Eugene Malson; and a sister, Helen Scifres.
Preceding in death were his parents, first wife and three sisters, Phyllis Miller, Rose Mary Malson and Lorrie Malson.
Visitation will be from 11 a.m. until time of service at 1 p.m. Tuesday, March 8, 2016, at Marks Mortuary in Wood River.
Burial will follow in Rose Lawn Memory Gardens in Bethalto with military honors.
Memorials may be made to BJC Hospice or San Antonio Pipes and Drums, c/o David Southerland, 233 Trail End, LaVernia, TX 78121.