Donald L. Ullman

August 3, 1939October 2, 2013

Donald Lewis Ullman, 74, of Peoria, beloved husband, father, grandfather passed away peacefully Wednesday, October 2nd.

Don was born in Peoria to Jerome and Elsie (Nirdlinger) Ullman.Don graduated in 1957 from Peoria Central High School and has attended class reunions there for the past 55 years.A brief sojourn from Peoria led him to Colorado College where he met his future wife, Marilyn, from Dallas, Texas.After college he served from 1962-1964 as a 1st the US Army in Germany.After returning from Germany Don and Marilyn were married in Dallas in 1968. She survives along with two children, Justin (Diane) Ullman of Glen Ellyn, and Suzanne (Joe) Griffin of Oak Park, IL; five grandchildren, Harper, Jude and Presley Ullman, and Jackson and Colleen Griffin.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother Dick Ullman.

His close friends, of which there are many, will remember Don as a generous, selfless man with a wonderful sense of humor. If you heard someone rummaging through your refrigerator before saying hello, it was most likely Don. If you had beef tongue in there, there was little chance it would make it through Don’s visit.

His son’s friends will eternally remember Don as the father who unabashedly drank milk from the carton in the middle of the night. His daughter’s friends will remember him as a man who loved Suzanne with all his being.

Don was dedicated and passionate in all that he did.Don spent 40 plus years at Federal Warehouse where he, his father and his brother, Richard, built a company and culture of loyalty and respect. If you asked Federal employees, they would tell you that Don was tough but fair and that he treated everyone like family.He had a great love for what he did and all the people at Federal.

As much hard work and passion that he put into his company, he did so equally with a number of charities and boards that he served on. Among them were Peoria Economic Development Council, Youth Farm, Bradley University, Red Cross, Upgrade, B’nai B’rith Covenant Home, YMCA, Channel47 WTVP, Eureka College, Forest Park Foundation, Peoria Public Library, Crittenton Centers, Anshai Emeth Congregation, Institute of Physical Medicine Foundation, Illinois Movers Association and Allied Van Lines.His friends have said that he was a humble, understated, quiet hero and that his generosity knew no bounds.Beyond his outward charity, there were many examples of quiet charity.Many things he did for people that only Don knew about.

If you were to ask Don what his greatest accomplishments were, he would tell you unequivocally his family. He and Marilyn were married for 45 wonderful years.And you only have to look at Don’s children to see how he has instilled humor, humility, and integrity of which he built his own life around.

A special thanks to all friends and family who brought so much light to Don’s life when blindness left him in total darkness. And an extra special thanks to all of the nurses over the years who gave Don care and most importantly friendship.

Funeral services will be held Friday, October 4 at 11:00 a.m. at Anshai Emeth Congregation in Peoria, IL.Davison-Fulton Woolsey-Wilton Funeral Home in Peoria, IL, is in charge of arrangements. Burial will be in Springdale Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made to Congregation Anshai Emeth, 5624 N. University, Peoria, IL, 61614; Crittenton Center, 442 W. John H. Gwynn Jr. Ave., Peoria, IL, 61605; University of Chicago Cancer Research Foundation, 5841 S. Maryland Ave., MC1140, Chicago, IL, 60637; IPMR, 6501 N. Sheridan Rd., Peoria, IL, 61614.

Please view Don’s obituary online at


  • Funeral Service Friday, October 4, 2013

Donald L. Ullman

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October 11, 2013

October 10, 2013

Don will be missed by all and served as an inspiration, certainly, to the entire PHS class of 1957. My sympathy to the Ullman families.

Bill Sulaski

October 8, 2013

Don always had great stories to tell about the moving business,his family & "fishing". I always gave him a hard time about "fish and release back to the water". I told him fish & release to the skillet was my idea of fishing. June of 2001, Don pretty much pushed me into a position that I told him I didn't want. He said he believed I would enjoy it and do well. I am glad that I had the opportunity many times to thank him for giving me that push. My 3rd position with the company.... still at it and love it! Of course, he reminded me every chance he got that he was right. Thank you & God Bless You Don! You will be sorely missed by everyone who had the honor of knowing you!Pam Lewellyn/Federal since 1996.

Carol McCrary

October 7, 2013

My deepest sympathy to the Ullman family. I worked with Don at Federal for 30 years...I'm grateful for the opportunities and friendship Don gave me. May his family rest in the love and memories of years past.

Joani Lipman Noble

October 6, 2013

To My Hero-Daddy Don. I have loved you and respected you from the first time I met you on Folkstone Rd in Dallas, Texas. I was just a Rug Rat to you at the time, but you were a One of A Kind amazing man to me and you still are 53 years later. I am so blessed that you fell in love with my sister and allowed me to be apart of your family. My world will not be the same without you. Love, Joani

Sandy Wheeler

October 6, 2013

My deepest sympathy to the Ullman family. My heart and thoughts are with all who knew him. While I only knew Don for a short period of time, it was obvious he was a kind thoughtful man. Rest in peace Don, you will be missed.

October 6, 2013

My deepest sympathy is expressed to the Ullman family. Don was my classmate and dear friend. When I was working for Caterpillar Inc., some years ago, Don would come in and we would have great humorous conversations. We delighted in telling everyone that we were classmates at Peoria High. I loved seeing him at reunions. He was always the person you did not want to miss. May the peace of God that passes all understanding be with the family. Don was a blessing to us all, and he will be greatly missed!
Cecilia A. Jordan

October 5, 2013

Uncle Donnie, as I always called him will be missed by all. He was a fine man who loved his family totally. He made all of those who worked for him feel like family. So many memories of a man who gave his all to his job and expected his employees to do the same. We may not have always agreed with him but he listened just the same. He will be missed by all who knew him. Rest in peace old friend, and thanks for all the memories. Marie Wagenaar

Jamie Rennick

October 5, 2013

Dear Don- You will forever be in the greatest of my childhood memories. Your presence guaranteed a smile on everyone's face and your antics during the holidays ensured that we all stayed light on our toes because we never knew what to expect. Thank you so much for setting such a fantastic example for us kids... the example of how to have fun at any age! You will be dearly missed, but not forgotten! I hope you will find comfort and peace in your next journey...and tell my Dad I say Hi if you see him along the way! :)

October 5, 2013

Marilyn, Justin & Suzanne,

It was a pleasure to know and work for Don. He was a good and fair man. He will be missed greatly by those who worked for him.

Federal Companies Truck Garage
Jim and Valerie Wallenfang