December 24, 1940 –March 21, 2023
TORRINGTON – Don Warfield, 82, of Torrington, died March 21, 2023, at home surrounded by his family. Cremation has taken place. At his request, no formal services are planned. He suggested family members hold a private memorial gathering at a time and place of their choosing. The Colyer Funeral Home assisted the family with the cremation arrangements.
Donald Wayne Warfield was born Dec. 24, 1940, at Madison, South Dakota, the son of Ellis and Irma (Woodcock) Warfield. He was raised on the family farm southwest of Madison. He graduated from Orland Consolidated School in 1959. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Dakota State University and a master’s degree from the University of Mississippi. He took additional graduate study at the University of Missouri.
He married Delores Jean Landis Aug. 26, 1962, at Colman, South Dakota. Two children were born to them.
In 1965, Warfield became an assistant professor of English at the University of South Dakota-Springfield. His specialties were British literature, Shakespeare and technical writing. He became director of the USD-S News Bureau in 1972. Besides producing news articles and photos, he supervised a total overhaul of the college’s marketing program.
Springfield lies along the banks of the Missouri River. The family enjoyed many camping, fishing and hunting opportunities.
Nineteen seventy-seven brought a major career change and a move to Gillette. Warfield accepted a position with AMAX Coal Company as a community and media relations representative. He continued in that position for the company’s coal and environmental services divisions until January 1986. Those nine years gave him an invaluable insight into the vital role of industry and business in America and the essential goodness of American works.
Upon leaving AMAX he founded and operated Don Warfield Communications in Gillette. His services included public relations and political consulting, writing, photography and video production. Mining manufacturing and tourism were major clients.
He maintained a life-long interest in post-secondary education. He served on various vocational-technical advisory committees, taught English and photography as an adjunct faculty member of Northern Wyoming Community College District, and served four years on the Wyoming Community College Commission.
He briefly accepted a full-time position in college marketing in Arizona in 2003. Fortunately, he was able to return to Wyoming in 2005. He ended his career as a government relations consultant and as a staff writer for the Riverton (Wyoming) Ranger.
Flying, hunting and recreational shooting were among his passions. As a pilot, he held private and instrument ratings and logged approximately 3,000 flight hours. He and his wife traveled much of the United States in their Piper Comanche. Many trips took them to visit their beloved children and grandchildren. Despite being a self-described “lousy hunter” and “mediocre” shooting competitor, he enjoyed both immensely. He was a longtime member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association and the National Rifle Association.
Warfield is survived by his wife of 60 years; daughter Darla (Rich) Knowlton, and son Grant (Sarah) Warfield; and grandchildren William Knowlton and Olivia and Anna Warfield; and sister Betty Johnson.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, James.