Donald Lee Quist was born January 20, 1936, in Moscow, Idaho to Theodore (Ted) and Mollie Pearl (French) Quist and passed away on Saturday, February 29, 2020. He grew up on the family farm north of Moscow, learning the value of hard work and the satisfaction of a job well done. Don attended schools in Pullman, sorely trying the patience of his beloved high school principal, Oscar Gladish, before graduating in 1954. After high school, he attended Washington State College and worked at various jobs in the Moscow-Pullman area while still helping on the family farm. Don served as a reservist in the Washington Army National Guard, rising to Sergeant First Class, and began farming full-time with his father.
In October 1956, Don married his high school sweetheart, Shirley May Harms, and together they raised four children. Don and Shirley often opened their home to relatives, neighbors, and friends. While attending the community church in Albion, Washington, they mentored many teens and young adults, welcoming them as extended family. Don was involved in different capacities with the churches they attended throughout the years, from singing in men’s quartets to serving as treasurer. Shirley and he were also instrumental in the founding of Logos School and supporters of Christ Church.
His life was interrupted in October of 1962 by a hunting accident, when he was shot and barely survived. The incident left him with a paralyzed arm and pain as a constant companion. Not one to quit or even complain, he put his head down and, through sheer determination, returned to providing for his family, relearning with his left hand all the skills he had once been able to do so easily.
Don spent his farming career earning the respect of his peers with excellent management techniques and a passion for soil conservation. He served on the board of directors for several farm-related organizations, including Palouse Producers, Pullman Grange Supply, and Latah County Grain Growers. Don never sought to be the center of attention, but when he did speak, people paid attention to his well thought-out and reasoned advice. Don’s tolerance of laziness and lack of effort was low; however, his compassion and willingness to help others was endless.
Don was preceded in death by his parents and his brother Harold. He will be greatly missed by his wife Shirley and his well-loved children – Debbie Quist-Olivares and husband Juan Carlos, Karen Quist, Carl Quist and wife Marie, and James Quist. In addition, his ten grandchildren – David, Daniella, Michael, Annette, Scott, Karissa, Bethany, Larissa, Michael, and Tony – will miss him dearly. His three great-granddaughters – Carina, Brooke, and Madelynn – lit up his eyes, as did the news of a fourth great-grandchild on the way. We will all remember his love and gentle teasing and live in honor of him.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 6 at the Moscow Church of the Nazarene and burial will at the Viola Cemetery.
A reception and time of fellowship will follow at the Viola Community Center.
The family suggests that memorials be made to Logos School Building Fund or to the Rural Pullman Fire Department.
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