September 2, 1937February 12, 2021
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Donald Lee Linker, husband, father, grandfather and friend, passed away peacefully on February 12, 2021, while surrounded by his two loving children. Don leaves a wonderful legacy through his children and their families. Together with his beloved wife Suzanne, who he described as his greatest asset in life, he provided them with a strong foundation rooted in faith, love and compassion.

Don was born on September 2, 1937, in Bowie, Texas, to Willis Abraham Linker and Oby Lee Hutson Linker, both of whom preceded him in death. He grew up in Gainesville, Texas, where he met his wife Suzanne during junior high school. He graduated from Gainesville High School in 1955 as salutatorian of his class. Don was also an Eagle Scout. After high school, Don attended the University of Texas where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mathematics and Geology. Don was a proud Longhorn alum and wore his UT class ring every day.

Following college, he was commissioned into the United States Navy in 1960. He served four years of active duty, including two years at sea as a Lieutenant Commander in the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean and two years as a Naval Intelligence Officer in Washington, D.C. Don was very proud to have served his country in the Navy and was frequently seen wearing his Navy veteran hat.

Don and Suzanne were married on December 30, 1962. They began their married life in Washington, D.C. where Don completed his Naval Service and began law school at American University. Following their time in Washington, D.C., Don and Suzanne returned to their native Texas where Don completed law school at the University of Houston in 1967. After graduating from law school, Don worked at several energy companies, including Halliburton Company and a subsidiary of Getty Oil Company. Don finished his legal career in 2012 working as a Senior Attorney with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, first in Houston and later in Dallas.

Throughout his life, Don had an appetite for knowledge and learning, and he also enjoyed sharing his knowledge with others. He spent many an afternoon and evening reading books about history, particularly about World War II. Don also loved teaching and taught classes throughout his adult life, including law classes at the University of Houston and the University of Dallas, and classes on Naval Intelligence at the Naval Reserve Officer’s School.

Don’s faith was an inspiration to his family and those who knew him. Don was an active member of Tallowood Baptist Church in Houston and was previously a member of First Baptist Church in Dallas and Second Baptist Church in Houston. Don’s unwavering trust in Christ served as a source of strength for his family as he stood by Suzanne’s side in her battle with ovarian cancer, helping her fight the disease with courage and a consistently positive attitude.

Characterized by many as a classic southern gentleman, Don always had a warm smile on his face. He loved antique cars and owned several during his life, including a London taxicab and a 1936 Packard. He could also dance a perfect Charleston!

Don was preceded in death by his wife Suzanne to whom he was married for 54 years and his sister Yvonne Linker Ashburn. He leaves behind his son John Kinard Linker and his wife Lisa Pooser Linker; his daughter, Alice Ann Linker Telle and her husband Michael Steven Telle; and his six grandchildren, who he loved very much, Caroline Elizabeth Linker, John Alexander “Jack” Telle, Sarah Chandler Telle, Jonathan William “Will” Linker, Reed Hutson Telle and Suzanne Kinard “Suzy” Telle.

Don’s family wishes to extend their sincere gratitude to the staff at The Abbey at Westminster Plaza, where Don lived for the last six years, and to Janice Hoffman and her team at My Family Hospice for the loving care provided to him.

In light of the current public health circumstances, a family-only funeral service celebrating Don’s life will be held.

In lieu of customary remembrances, the family requests with gratitude that any donations be made in memory of Donald Lee Linker to Tallowood Baptist Church at 555 Tallowood Rd, Houston, TX 77024.


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



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Karen Martin

February 25, 2021

What a touching obituary showing the many faceted life of indeed a wonderful Southern gentleman. Don loved his wife and children and grandchildren without reservation. Suzanne was indeed Don's best asset; and he, hers. Rest in peace, dear friend. God bless your Christian legacy!