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Donald  Olson

Obituary of Donald Olson

STERLING - Don Olson was reunited with his forever Valentine Maxine on Sunday February 14, 2021. Don was born June 6, 1927 in Rhinelander, Wisconsin to Euphemia and Arthur Olson. He served in the army at the end of World War II and then attended the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater where he met the love of his life. Don and Maxine were married on August 18, 1951 in Marshfield, Wisconsin. Don taught high school in Wisconsin before moving to Sterling, Illinois in 1955 where he and Maxine raised their family and grew old together. He taught business education at Sterling High School for 28 years while earning his master’s degree from the University of Iowa and managing the Select Employees Credit Union on a part-time basis. In 1982 Don retired from teaching to become the full-time CEO of the credit union; he and Maxine then continued to grow the credit union with the help of many valued employees. Don was active in the Sterling community, lending his business acumen on finance committees at St. John’s Lutheran Church where he was a member. He was a member of Sterling Noon Rotary, Paul Harris Fellow and the Sterling American Legion. When he retired from the credit union in 1992, he volunteered as a CGH hospital bluecoat and drove vets to out-of-town medical appointments. He and Maxine spent several years wintering in Florida and traveling extensively in the United States and abroad. Despite living in Illinois for over 65 years, Don was proud of his Wisconsin heritage. He was an avid Green Bay Packers fan and helped promote his hometown of Rhinelander with his Hodag license plates. Don worked hard and played hard; he enjoyed golfing, tennis and fishing, and attending and watching sporting events. He and Maxine loved spending time with their children and grandchildren. Don and Maxine were blessed with many wonderful friends throughout the years. We would like to extend a thank you on his behalf to those of you who reached out through phone, letters, or email in the last couple years. He greatly enjoyed hearing from all of you. Don is survived by his children, Jim (Vicki) Olson of Sterling; Nancy (Eric) Rasmussen of Verona, Wisconsin; grandchildren Ben (Jenny) Olson, Jami Olson, Kari Rasmussen, and Scott (Fiance-Rachel Downing) Rasmussen; and great grandchildren Sophie and Nick. He is also survived by his brother Dewaine (Adrienne), sister-in-law Sally (Russ) Schmidt, and several nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his wife Maxine, his parents, and sister-in-law and brother-in-law Betty and Jim Kemper. A private service will be held for the family officiated by Reverend Doctor Christina Berry of First Presbyterian Church of Sterling. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Sterling Schools Foundation or CGH Health Foundation c/o Schilling Funeral Home PO Box 592 Sterling, Illinois 61081. The family hopes to have a Celebration of Life later this summer.