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Donald Owen Novaria


Last updated 7/25/2019 at 8:46am | View PDF

Donald “Don” Owen Novaria, 95, of Hinsdale, passed away July 8, 2019, at the Brookdale Senior Living Center.

Don was born in 1923, in Huron, S.D., the second son of S.A. “Stan” and Ann Louise (Blank) Novaria. His father worked for the Western Union Telegraph Company, and they lived in various cities in the Midwest and Plains states, including South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas, Colorado, Nebraska and, finally, North Dakota. Don moved seven times in the first 11 years of his life and attended five schools during that time.

During his childhood, Don enjoyed the fun and adventure of moving from place to place with his older brother, Jack. Don was a Boy Scout, and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout when he was just 12 years old. Don graduated from Fargo Central High School in early 1941 and was granted special permission to enter North Dakota State University at the start of their winter quarter.

World War II interrupted his college education. He joined the United States Navy Air Corps in November of 1942, and was called in April of 1943 to begin his flight training, which occurred at various locations in the Midwest during 1943-44. In September, 1944, Don was commissioned an ensign, and assigned to the U.S.S. Cleveland (CL 35), a cruiser assigned to the seventh fleet in the South Pacific. He spent time in Okinawa and near Tokyo Bay at the end of the war, and was discharged from the Navy on May 31, 1946. Don returned to North Dakota State that fall, where he became a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity, and received his bachelor’s degree in 1948.

It was at a sorority dance in the spring of 1947 that he met Gloria Eleanor Aas, and they were married in Fargo on Aug. 16, 1949. From 1948 until 1982, Don worked for the Chevrolet Motor Division of General Motors, starting as a parts and accessories representative, and rising to the position of zone manager of the Milwaukee zone. Once again, his life took him to several cities and states throughout the Midwest – North Dakota, Minnesota, Illinois and Wisconsin. Don loved his work in the car business at a time when cars were “king” and enjoyed the many people that he associated with in his career over the years. In his retirement, Don enjoyed golf, reading, crossword and other puzzles, and spending time with his family.

Don was preceded in death by his parents; his wife of 56 years, Gloria; and his brother, John Charles “Jack” Novaria.

He is survived by three children, Robert (Catherine) Novaria, Elizabeth (Albert) Vigiletti and James(Teresa) Novaria; his seven grandchildren, Michael (Kathryn Abrams) Vigiletti, Laura (Jake) Reidel, Kathryn Novaria, Andrew (Christine) Novaria, Nathan Novaria, Matthew Novaria and Andrea Novaria; and three great-grandchildren, Zachary, and Henry Reidel and Hannah Novaria.

Graveside services, including military rites, will be held at a future date.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to a charity of choice.

Sullivan Funeral Home in Hinsdale handled the arrangements.


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