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Greenwood Memorial Park & Funeral Home

350 Monroe Ave Ne, Renton, WA

OBITUARY

Donaldson Martin Carnahan

27 May , 19393 October , 2014
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Donaldson Martin Carnahan age 75 died suddenly at his home in Renton Washington on 3 October 2014. He died on the 55th anniversary of his wedding to the love of his life Sharon Joy Poulsen who predeceased him in 2010.

Don is survived by his children Shari Carnahan, Kimberlee (Ronald) Medlock; their children Victoria, Donaldson, Bradley, Camilla, Gregory and Scott, and Tamara (Kevin) Johnson and their two sons Corey and Kyle.

Don was predeceased by his parents Donaldson Emmett Carnahan and May Cherry Martin, siblings Shirley Wilhite and Daniel Carnahan.

Don attended school in the Renton School district and returned there to teach after graduating from University of Washington. Don played football at UW from 1958-1962 including the Husky Hall of Fame 1961 Rose Bowl team.

Don returned to Renton High School to teach, then went to work in Olympia for the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. He became the director of Pupil Transportation and began working with colleagues all over the nation for safer student transportation.

Don was instrumental in the founding and running of national and state organizations for Pupil Transportation. He was the current president of the National Association for Pupil Transportation. Just a few of the organizations he was involved with include: NAPT, NSTA, NASDPTS, WAPT.

After retiring from OSPI Don went to work for Laidlaw in 1996. In 2003 he began working at Zonar Systems as vice president of Business Development for Pupil Transportation. He always attributed his success to his wife Sharon and her writing and organization abilities.

Don enjoyed the outdoors and took his family camping, motorcycle and snowmobile riding and hunting over the years.

Memories

Donaldson Martin Carnahan

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Miriam Haile

28 October 2014

My deepest sympathy goes out to the Carnahan family. I was fortunate to work with Don for almost 3 years and will always remember his smile and incredible knowledge on the transportation industry. Prayers goes out to his family and loved ones.

Woody Fitzmaurice

27 October 2014

Don and I first became acquainted in 1978 at the State Directors meeting in Phoenix. He represented Washington and I represented Missouri. Over the years we worked together on many issues related to the industry. We shared strong family ties as well as a love of athletics and the outdoors. Don was a stalwart of a man and one that I think of frequently.

Our thoughts are with his family.

Woody Fitzmaurice, Retired

Theresa Anderson

17 October 2014

The loss is felt all over the nation. I first extend my sympathies to your family and secondly to your “work family”. Just a moment ago I went to send you a message to get some guidance and realized that is no longer possible. There are so many things which I would like to thank you for, being a mentor, cheerleader, father figure, and friend. We were so fortunate to have you in our lives and how you made us strive to be better. There will forever be a void in many hearts as that place is held only for you. Sleep well sir, I raise my martini glass, light a favorite cigar and enjoy in your honor. See you on the other side.

Ken Kanikeberg

15 October 2014

To the entire families of Don and Sharon and the girls Shari, Kimberlee and Tamara,

The entire Kanikeberg family are so saddened by the passing of your father. Don was a devoted and loving husband to your mother Sharon for over fifty years. He was a loving and devoted father to each of you and to your families. Between the two of them they loved and provided for all of you.

Don was a talented and gifted athlete. A two time Rose Bowl champion, a member of the first National Champion Husky team and a member of the Husky Hall of Fame.

Don was a learner, teacher, mentor, coach, administrator, visionary and an awesome unassuming leader. The students in this state and this country are much better served and safer due to your life and actions.

Don was my friend, coach, partner and after my father's passing my big brother and sometimes my father figure. We had many an adventure together from hunting in the Colockum with Sahri, to Wyoming with Bill, Barry, Joe, and Mike, to Lake Roosevelt with the Kenney family and Eddie.

Most of all Don had a gentle spirit, and firm handshake, a warm embrace, a twinkle in his eye and a laugh that could fill a room. He had a way to make all of us feel that we were the only one he was talking to and was truly interested in what we had to say. This extended to our young people.

We used to laugh one is never a prophet in your own land. Well Don, you proved them wrong!

You will forever be in our hearts. We miss and love you my friend.

God bless you for all that you shared!

The Kanikeberg family;
Ken and Mary, Lauren and Heather, Joe and Karen, Carol Jo and Larry.

George Horne

14 October 2014

Don is a great loss not only to his immediate family, but also to his extended family of everyone associated with the student transportation industry. His shoes will never be filled.

Tracy Wang

14 October 2014

Our sympathies to Shari, Kim, Ron, Vicki, Donny, Brad, Cami, Greg, Scott, Tam, Kevin, Corey, and Kyle. You guys are a great family!! I will fondly remember meeting your dad/grandfather for the first time when he came to visit Shari at work. His confidence intimidated me at first, but his friendliness quickly put me at ease. Years later, he and Shari and I were actually classmates in a machining class. It was fun to sense his interest and enthusiasm for the class and to witness his respect for Shari's skill and intelligence. I believe family was paramount to him, and you will always be his greatest treasures.

14 October 2014

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Carnahan family. Don will be greatly missed. His leadership in the pupil transportation industry will long remain a positive influence. Betsy and I are grateful for our many shared moments with Don. His passion for safe transportation of our nation's children set the standard that will be remembered in future years.

Linda Bluth & Betsy Eisman

Harvey Boatman

14 October 2014

My heart goes out to you. Don was a wonderful person and a great advocate for safe student travel. We all benefited from his presence and grieve his passing.

Ann Johnson

13 October 2014

Dear Shari, Kim and Tami,
So many thoughts and memories as you go though this time. What fun we had...camping, riding dirt bikes, Christmas at Grandma & Grandpa's, learning to shoot...through it all was Uncle Don, smiling,encouraging...when I look back on my childhood, I see all of you...and hold you all close to my heart.

Terry Voy

12 October 2014

It is with great sorrow that I learned of Don's passing. Don was a mentor to me and hundreds of others throughout our pupil transportation community. He was admired, respected and loved as a colleague, but to me, as a great friend. I will miss him greatly!

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