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Showalter Blackwell Long Funeral Home

312 West Union Street, Liberty, IN

OBITUARY

Donald Eugene Dearth Jr.

February 14, 1947July 22, 2020
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Donald E. Dearth Jr. passed away on July 22, 2020, peacefully surrounded by his family.

As a long time resident of Fayette County, Don also spent many years living in Union and Randolph Counties as well. He graduated from Randolph Southern High School in 1965 and was a member of the first graduating class of the Lynn and Spartanburg consolidation. He was well known and loved by many in each of these communities. With a personality as large as his stature, he left impressions on every person he met. He had a laugh that would fill a room and was utterly contagious.

He is survived by longtime companion Rhonda Day, of 27 years, as well as his children Ginger (Jody) Brown, Jill (Brian) Monroe, Jennifer (Bob) Matheny, Melissa (Andy) Spillers, and Donald (Ladessa) Lilly. He was a very proud grandfather to David Lilly, Beth Lilly, Ethan Westover, Timothy Monroe, Joshua Monroe, Jacob Hall, Kayla Matheny, Emilee Brown, and Lucas Brown. Don was blessed with 8 great grandchildren. Don is also survived by siblings Debbie Matix and Danny Dearth, as well as many nieces and nephews. In addition, he leaves behind many lifelong friendships.

Don was preceded in death by his brother and best friend, Dale Dearth as well as his parents, Esther and Donald Dearth, Sr.

Don was loved by many. He worked hard, played hard, and lived every day to the fullest. He retired after 31 years at Visteon (Ford) in addition to leaving a large footprint in the horse racing industry. He began that journey with his brother, Dale, and D & D Stables. He and Rhonda then continued with this passion for thoroughbred horse racing, priding themselves into developing well known breeding and racing stock. They spent many long days at the racetrack together, building a life envied by many, and admired by all. He was proud of his many accolades as a horseman, which run thick through the bloodlines of his family. He learned many great traits throughout the years and loved passing them on to others. He was always willing to offer help or give advice to anyone in need. Don was a member of the Indiana Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association.Don was a veteran of the United States Air Force and proudly served his county for 4 years, primarily stationed at Travis Air Force Base in California, where he was honorably discharged.

A receiving of friends and family for Don will be held at Showalter, Blackwell, Long, in Liberty, IN on Saturday, July 25th, 2020 from 11:00am to 2:00pm., with services following directly after. Memorial contributions may be made to Permanently Disabled Jockies Fund (PDJF) at PO Box 803, Elmhurst, IL 60126.

Services

  • Visitation

    Saturday, July 25, 2020

  • Funeral Service

    Saturday, July 25, 2020

Memories

Donald Eugene Dearth Jr.

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robin yaryan

July 25, 2020

Rhonda and the children of Don, I am so sorry for your loss. I believe Don made and impact on all that he met. If you visit the Visteon Memory Wall, it is a testament to that as so many have responded to the sad news of Don's passing. You all are in my prayers that God will bring comfort to you and fill your hearts with the memories that Don made with each of you throughout his life. May God Bless each of you during this time.

Phil & Haliie Fish

July 24, 2020

I have two things to say, Wow what a great man Don was! And how lucky he was to have a companion and best friend Rhonda for all these years and his great love for his horses ...Rhonda, Hallie and i are very saddened for your loss of Don . And for anybody that only met him or had him as a friend will have a big hole in there heart for the rest of there lives...We are very sorry for your loss Rhonda and to the rest of the Dearth family may he rest in peace....

MARY ANN HOPE

July 24, 2020

I am so sorry for your loss, Rhonda. Though I did not know Don, I know from your devotion that he was a great guy.

You were so kind to me and my horse, Flash when you visited our barn. We both wish you a life of wonderful memories that will make you happy and will make you smile.

Gay Day

July 24, 2020

Don was a great match for my former daughter-in-law. He was a happy person, fun to be with and a big happy persona. He and Rhonda always enjoyed showing there new foals. Just seams the really good ones go to soon! God bless all the family. Love you Rhonda, Mom Gay

Mark and Laurie Rissell

July 24, 2020

Our condolences and prayers to the entire Dearth and extended family. We have lost a great horseman, father and citizen of Indiana. God Bless you all.

Mike Brown

July 23, 2020

When you say he had a laugh that would fill a room, you are so right. Many days on the backside of the track, I sought him out, needing to hear that laugh. He always had one to share.

Dianna and Bob Jaqua

July 23, 2020

Are hearts are broken. Such a kind man. We enjoyed his visits with Rhonda. We will dearly miss him. He will be missed by so many. ❤️

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