Donald R. Carolus, 94, our Father, Grandfather, WWII warrior, and friend, passed from this earth to his eternal life at 10:55pm on Thursday, January 10th at the home of his daughter. Don was born June 20, 1924 in Lima, the 11th of 12 children born to Milo and Bertha (Theising) Carolus. His parents and all of his siblings preceded him in death. He graduated from South High School in 1942 and on November 25th of that year married the love of his life, Helen Wolfe, with whom he joyfully spent 64 years of marriage before her passing in 2007.
Donald served in the United States Army from January 1943 to March 1946. After extensive training in the States, he was assigned to the CBI (China-Burma-India) Theater of operations, based at ASSAM Airfield in northern India. He was honorably discharged on March 22,1946 and returned home to his young bride. Don was a lifetime member of the Lima VFW post 1275 and the American Legion. He truly was one of the “Greatest Generation”.
Upon return to civilian life, Donald began working for the Standard Oil Company where he worked in the maintenance department. After 36 years of service he retired in 1982 from what had become BP Petroleum. Don cherished the many friends he made in his years at Standard Oil/BP and right up to his last days told tales of the escapades he and his co-workers enjoyed over the years.
Donald loved life and enjoyed many hobbies. With his own hands and the help of friends and family, Don built his family home on Breese Road in 1957 where he spent his life right up until his 92nd year. His childrens’ homes are filled with woodworking projects which Don built. He was an avid hunter, golfer, and fisherman. A prolific reader, he especially enjoyed western novels and mysteries. In 2007 Don restored a 1946 CJ Willy’s Jeep similar to the war time model he had driven during WWII, and displayed it in the Memorial Day parade in Allen County for several years.
Don was a 60+ year member of Rousculp Church of Christ, where in years past he taught Sunday school, served as a deacon and elder, and was a member of the church board. He loved to sing and to tell stories and jokes, and anyone who knew him can attest to just how many tales he could tell!
Donald was a devoted husband, father, grand, great, and great-great grandfather, who enjoyed being involved in the lives of his family. In his final months he could be found nearly every Tuesday morning at Ike’s Restaurant having breakfast with a group of his buddies.
Don is survived by five children: Sheran (Jim) Wibright of Atwater, California; Connie Mortimer of Cridersville; Debbie (Larry) Sidener of Cridersville; Jeff (Ann) Carolus of Lima; and Jan (Darrell) Campbell of Lima. Don was Grandfather of 15, Great-Grandfather of 47, and Great-Great-Grandfather of 7. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by 3 Great Granddaughters and siblings Hazel, Mabel, Howard, Everett, Forest, Charles, Virginia, Eldon, Marjorie, Robert, and Gladys. Known to his family as Papa Duck, he was a beloved mentor and will be sorely missed by all.
Don’s family would like to thank the staff of Mercy Health and Mercy Hospice for their excellent care of him in his final weeks. A very special thank you to Dr. Omitowoju and his colleagues at Internal Medicine for their superb care of Don over the years, and to Dr. Nicholson, Dr. Powell and Dr. Shaheen for their care of Don during his cancer and heart problems.
Friends and family may visit at Bayliff & Son Funeral Home in Cridersville on Monday, January 14th from 2 to 8pm. On Tuesday, January 15th, visitation will be at Rousculp Church of Christ on the corner of St. Johns Road and Amherst Road from 10 to 10:30am. Funeral services will begin at 10:30am with Pastor Kenny Rader officiating. Burial with military rites will follow in Memorial Park Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, Rousculp Church of Christ, or the charity of the donors choice.