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Obituary for Donald Walter Huskins
Donald was born June 27, 1946 to Doris Hogan Veal and Walter George “Huck” Huskins in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. He was the only child born of Doris and Huck but had three half siblings: Hart Huskins (Orlando, Florida), the late Marcie Veal Metzger (deceased), and Dallas Douglas Veal, Jr. (Eatonton, Georgia).
Donald graduated Putnam County High School with the Blue Devil class of 1964. He then attended West Georgia College, where he met the first love of his life and the mother of his children, Sylvia Kathleen Sanders. Donald and Sylvia were married June 28, 1966. After college Donald enlisted in the Army as an infantryman, became a Jump Master at Fort Benning, and completed Officer Candidate School before serving a tour in Vietnam as a 2nd Lieutenant. He received many decorations from combat in Vietnam, including decorations for Valor and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge.
After returning home from Vietnam, Donald attended Mercer Law School while Sylvia taught grade school. During this time they had two sons, Christopher Donald Huskins (1972) and Grayson Sanders Huskins (1974). After earning his Juris Doctor in 1974, he moved his family home to Eatonton, Georgia to begin his law practice and serve his community. Initially he began as an Assistant District Attorney under Joe Briley. He then joined his stepfather Dallas Veal in private practice. During his law practice, he was appointed by the Governor to be Putnam County’s first Solicitor General of the State Court, a role he served for 30 years until he retired. After the passing of Dallas Veal, Sylvia graduated from Mercer Law School, and they practiced together until she passed away in 2006. At that time he decided to retire and hand the practice over to his son Chris, who had joined them in 1997, and Chris’s wife Brandy Turk Huskins, who joined them in 2003.
Throughout Donald’s career he served the Eatonton community in numerous roles. He served Gatewood Schools, Inc. as a coach for women’s basketball and softball and varsity baseball and as the Public Address announcer at home varsity football games. He coached his sons in every baseball and football season at the Putnam County Recreation Department. He enjoyed acting and participating in many P.A.P.A. productions. An avid runner, he enjoyed running and raced in countless 10K road races in the southeast--but most importantly the Tar Baby Road Race (now the Torture Trail) each spring in Eatonton, Georgia. He was a member of Eatonton First United Methodist Church, where he attended every Sunday until his health failed him, sang in the Chancel Choir, taught Bible studies, and served numerous times on the Board of Trustees and Staff Parrish Relations Committee.
He and Sylvia enjoyed traveling the world together and traveling with their dear friends from the aforementioned “Class of ’64.”
After Sylvia passed away, Donald was blessed to fall in love again and he married his wife, Alice Elizabeth Sumner, with whom he spent the rest of his life. They were married June 3, 2007. While Donald was retired, Beth continued her passion for teaching until she resigned to spend more time with Donald and their 5 grandchildren. Until Donald’s health recently prevented them from doing so, he and Beth enjoyed traveling together and attending every T-ball, soccer, football, basketball, baseball, wrestling and football game (not to mention piano and dance recitals) they could find one of their grandchildren participating in.
Donald felt truly blessed and one of the luckiest men on earth to be loved by two beautiful and incredible women who would have him as their husband. He remained in contact with his sister Hart and Sylvia’s four sisters and brother until his passing. He was truly fortunate and loved spending time with his brother Douglas, who visited with him every day and took him to lunch when he became unable to drive.
Donald is survived by his wife Beth of 12 years, his son Chris and daughter-in-law Brandy, his son Grayson and daughter-in-law Brandi (both of whom teach for Putnam County Schools); his sister Hart; and his brother Douglas. He is also survived by his five grandchildren who loved their daDons: (from Chris and Brandy) Cam, Lily Grace and Sylvie; (from Grayson and Brandi) Finn and Hutson.
A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, October 16th at 2 p.m. in the Historic Sanctuary at Eatonton First United Methodist Church. The family will receive friends from 1 p.m. in the Great Hall, Eatonton First United Methodist Church until time for the service. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be given to Eatonton First United Methodist Church or Gatewood Schools.