20/12/1948 – 26/12/2017
Donald grew up in Pinelands, attended the local schools and according to the Scout records at 8 years old, joined the 2nd Pinelands Cub Pack in 1954.
He spent a number of years in the old Tygerberg District, and it was in 1968 that he first entered the District as Cubmaster of the Epping Pack. When this Group closed down, he became the Cubmaster of 1st Parow. Donald kept this position until he was made District Cubmaster. It was while he held this position that he started the 1st Vrijzee Group. Soon after this Group was established, he was appointed Assistant District Commissioner (Cubs) and then devoted his time to the smooth running of the Cub Section.
In 1982 Donald was approached and asked to consider his appointment as DC of the Cape Town District and after much consideration he realised that this District needed help and guidance, and decided to accept the position.
However, Donald will be best remembered in his role as APC Cub Programme and as a key member of the Western Cape Adult Training Team, especially for the Cub section.
His dedication to Scouting and passion for the Cubbing was recognized and during his Scouting career, was awarded the Certificate of Merit, Medal of Merit and the prestigious Order of the Silver Protea. Donald's many years as a member of the movement was also acknowledged and he received the Long Service Medal and in 1994 the 40-year Bar to the Long Service Medal.
After living in Pinelands for may years, Donald moved to Edgemead and then to the La Province Retirement Village in Welgelegen.
The following two tributes to Donald were read at the memorial service by Scouters from the Cub section.
Tribute by Nicky Jonas
I have had the privilege of knowing Donald for the past 20 years. During this time he was my friend and mentor.
Donald fulfilled many roles during his service to the Scouting movement and gave each role that he undertook his all. He truly lived up to his Scout Promise.
Donald was always calm, reassuring and up for a laugh. If we were not sure of anything, needed a sounding board or had a quick question – Let’s ask Donald, He was our Cubbing Guru. He would remove his glasses, sit pensively for a few seconds and the next minute his finger would go up and the answer would follow.
Donald was passionate about Scouting and was at virtually every Regional Cub training course, competition and event as far back as I can remember. Even while in hospital he was keen to know what was happening.
I am only one of many many scouters whose life Donald has enriched. The turnout here today is proof of that, his legacy will live on in all of the Scouters that he has trained and mentored over the years. There are many more Scouters who would have loved to be here today but could not attend.
Tribute by Arlene Johnston
I first met Donald over 40 years ago when I joined Scouting. Anne Jackson was the Pack Scouter of 2nd Somerset West and was retiring to do further education. In at the deep end, I was booked to do the Preliminary Course as it was called in 1978. I went along absolutely quaking in my boots. The Training Team seemed so austere and un-reachable. Then Donald stepped up. This fun-loving man was just what we needed. He taught us that learning can be fun! I was a teacher of the old school so this really appealed to me – FUN WHILE LEARNING! We woke up one morning to find one of the Training Team’s bra fluttering from the flagpole! Donald’s doing, of course.
That weekend started a friendship that was heart-warming, loving, educational and fun. He also saw me through my Woodbadge and my Camping Course and many other trials that faced me. Always supportive and encouraging.
We went to many, many Pow-Wows and Team Screams together, as participants or as Committee members. Who can forget Donald dressed up as Akela or a Mermaid? He was always willing to play any part in our skits. He was a master at making wonderfully realistic wounds and frightening everyone into emergency stance!
Donald never raised his voice but people listened to him. He was never too busy to listen to someone and to give quiet, helpful advice. He lived for Scouting and the ideals for which it stands. He was even at the last Edwards Shield giving his time and expertise, this after spending two months in hospital! He is going to be sorely missed by our Scouting family as well as his own family.
I can only imagine the cheer that went up in heaven when he walked through the gate. There would be many of our past Scouters there to welcome him home. We will all meet again one day, that is a promise. In the meanwhile, Donald, our dearly loved friend, Scouter, Associate and family member
Rest in Peace
Scout Heritage 2019