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US Navy


Donald "Don" Eugene Brightwell

February 20, 1947 ~ March 5, 2018 (age 71)
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Donald Eugene “Don” Brightwell, age 71, of Palestine, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, the 5th day of March, 2018.  He was born on the 20th day of February, 1947 in Longview, Texas to Wilton Brightwell and Mary May Brightwell.  Don was a U.S. Navy Veteran and worked as a manager for the Dallas Morning News and Tyler Morning Telegraph for many years before his retirement.  He enjoyed reading and had a love for nature, especially birds.  Don took pleasure in building bird houses and feeders.   He was a Christian and member of the Cedar Creek Missionary Baptist Church.  

Don is preceded in death by his first wife, Carolyn Brightwell and father, Wilton Brightwell.

Don Brightwell is survived by his wife of 18 years, Joyce Brightwell of Palestine, Texas; mother, Mary Brightwell of Henderson, Texas; daughter, Donna Schultz of Palestine, Texas; step daughter, Stephanie Vanzandt of Tulsa, Oklahoma; son, Robin Brightwell; step son, Chris Fansler of Rockwall, Texas; brothers, Charles Brightwell of Henderson, Texas, Alton Brightwell of Mineola, Texas; grandchildren, Peyton Bentley, Lindsey Bentley, Cameron Brightwell, Macie Brightwell, Benjamin Matthews, Dublin Fansler, Grace Vanzandt, Garet Vanzandt and 4 great grandchildren.   

Friends are cordially invited to a visitation with the family from five o’clock until seven o’clock in the evening on Wednesday, the 7th day of March, 2018 at Rhone Funeral Home. 

Graveside services with Military Honors will be held at eleven o’clock in the morning on Tuesday, the 13th day of March, 2018 at Roselawn Park with Bro. Randall Reeves officiating.  Prior to the graveside, Don will be cremated.     

In lieu of customary remembrances, memorial contributions in Donald Brightwell’s memory can be directed toward St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

Services for Donald Brightwell are in care of Rhone Funeral Home, 3900 S. State Highway 19, Palestine, Texas.

Donations may be made to:

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
501 St. Jude Place, Memphis TN 38105
Tel: 1-800-805-5856

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