Donald Lamar Herring

November 16, 1939September 20, 2021

Donald (Don) Lamar Herring, age 81, of Dadeville, Alabama passed away on Monday, September 20, 2021. Donnie was born November 16, 1939 on the family farm in Lee County, Alabama. Don was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Sandra Phipps Herring, son Stanley Mark, parents Otis and Leila Herring, two brothers (Otis Jr and Thurston) and one sister (Francis). He is survived by his son Steven, granddaughters Carrie, Jasmine and Lydia, great granddaughter Annabelle, his brother Robert, and Sister Nina.

Don graduated from Auburn University in 1961 and began his career with the Lockheed aerospace company as Design Engineer on the C141 and then as Senior Engineer on the C5 aircraft. He earned his Masters Degree in Industrial Management at Georgia Tech in 1979. During his 39-year career with Lockheed, he guided the development of the F-22 Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) aircraft for 11 years. In 1987, Don was assigned Chief Engineer of the ATF at the Skunk Works in Burbank, California. He also testified before congress on behalf of the project. Don finished his career with Lockheed-Martin in 2000 as Vice President of Engineering.

In 2006, he was invited to accept the Collier Trophy, one of the nation's most prestigious prizes for aeronautical development, on behalf of the Lockheed Team for the F-22 ATF project. In his retirement, one of Don's greatest joys was hosting family reunions at their home on Lake Martin. He will be remembered by family and friends as intelligent, loving, kind, and humble.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be sent to State Employees Credit Union (SECU) Jim and Betsy Bryan Hospice Home of UNC Health Care in Pittsboro, North Carolina.

Steve and Samantha Herring and family invite you to join us for a virtual celebration of the lives Don and Sandra Herring. Considering the current health pandemic in the US, we appreciate your understanding of the need for this type of service.

Date and Time: Saturday, October 2, 2021 12:00 PM Eastern Time, 11:00 AM Central Time. Please join 15 minutes before the meeting is scheduled to start.

Test Call: We will hold a test call Wednesday night, Sept 29, at 7pm Eastern, 6pm Central Time, for those who wish to test their connection and become familiar with joining the meeting. The instructions listed below will apply both to the test meeting on Wednesday and the service on Saturday. Join Zoom Meeting via Computer Click here: If you have trouble clicking on the link, cut and paste it into your computer's browser (Chrome, Edge, Safari, etc) You may be asked, "Do you want to allow this page to open 'Zoom.US'? Cancel or Allow." Click Allow. You will then be asked if you'd like to join with video. We hope that you will click 'allow' so that others can see you. If asked for a password, enter this number: 280291 You may then be asked to choose ONE of the audio conference options. Choose 'join with computer audio'. Join Zoom Meeting via Phone If you are not joining by computer, but are dialing in by phone instead, you will be asked for this information when you dial in – Meeting ID: 996 4250 8485 Passcode: 280291 Dial in by phone using either of these numbers: 888 475 4499 US Toll-free 877 853 5257 US Toll-free


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Donald Lamar Herring

have a memory or condolence to add?

Malcolm Bowles

November 28, 2021

I remember everything. In our family reunions we’d listen to Dads mufflers. All our uncles would hang outside and hit some man stuff. Tried not to upset “ Big Mana”. I loved and have missed all of you. Uncle Donnie was a hero! The F22 Raptor is a great plane that’s saved lives.

Sandra Gumm (Bowles)

November 28, 2021

Please accept my deepest condolences.
I remember all the family reunions at Papa and Big Momma’s house in Opelika. It was the best part of the summer seeing all of our Uncles, Aunts and cousins. Uncle Donnie was always so nice and funny. He and Aunt SANDRA came to my wedding in Richmond, Va. in 1978. My dad was Otis Herring, Jr who passed in 1979.

Sandra P. Gumm (Bowles)

Larry Conner

September 29, 2021

So very sorry for your loss to you and your whole family. You are in Denise and my prayers.

Joyce Forehand

September 25, 2021

My dearest brother you were so special to me I loved you dearly. I watched your devotion for my sister in amazement . You would let your own needs go to make sure she was ok. The last few years were hard and you never complained . You both are in heaven now whole and healed.

Jenny Kaye Chontos

September 25, 2021

Uncle Donnie and I sitting in the rocking chairs, just the two of us, talking, looking at the lake from the deck, sharing stories. He had the greatest smile and laugh, he always appreciated time with family. I will miss him dearly💕❤️

Steve Herring

September 25, 2021

We are planning a virtual service on October the 2nd at 12 noon eastern/11am central. Details are being worked out now so please watch for updates on this site.

Ashley Mcelrath

September 24, 2021

I’m so lost for words even though I were there tending to Mrs. Sandra you knew I were always there for you I looked at you as a close special person that were place in my life to give me knowledge we both had duties we were put in each other lives for a reason. Mr. Don were a kind and grateful person no matter what I bring to him he never turns it down one thing I can say he were grateful for everything I did for them. He didn’t never like to see me go but I’ll always told him I’ll see you in a few hours he’ll say what ? You must be going home to check on your family and come back ? lol I’ll say no sir as soon as you close your eyes and wake up I’ll be here because time goes by so quickly. I sat with them for 10 months and the way we bonded felt like forever. I will love him and Mrs. Sandra forever they will always be in my heart. I hated that I had to say goodbye so soon When I use talk spiritual to him I use to love the spiritual come back and all of those stories I love You. I’m glad and blessed that God led me toward a wonderful and strong person like you and I can say you taught Marcus something when we ask you how did you and Mrs. Sandra make thru 61 years of marriage one thing you told him that he’s sticking to his you have to kiss her on the forehead every time he leaves I’ll say you know what Mr. Don I miss and love you ..

Karen Nissen

September 24, 2021

Uncle Don was the kindest, most generous and humblest man I have ever known. He amazed me at how much he loved his family and how devoted he was to them.. He was a man whom I admired much and he has left a void in our family that can not be filled. I will hold tight to my memories of him and all of our special times together on Lake Martin. I love you Uncle Don .. looking forward to the day we will see each other again! Love, Karen

Nina Jones

September 24, 2021

My brother Don and I have shared so many precious times together and numerous memories I will treasure the rest of my life. Don was always a caring and generous man who always saw to the care of his family. I am truly proud of my baby brother and all of his accomplishments and accolades. Don will be missed by all. Love, Nina