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2659 John F. Kennedy Road
Dubuque, IA 52002
Phone: 563-556-0776
Donald Opper

Donald H Opper

Sunday, March 10th, 2019
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Donald H. Opper, 91, died on Sunday March 10, at his home in Dubuque, Iowa surrounded by his loving family. Don was born on April 3, 1927 in Riverside, Illinois, the son of Harold and Marietta (Malloy) Opper.

He graduated from Riverside Brookfield High School and postponed college to serve 2 years in the U.S. Navy during World War II. After serving, he continued his education and earned a bachelor degree from Western Michigan University. His interest in design, led Don to Kendall College of Art and Design where he earned his master degree. Don headed Design and Engineering for Kroehler Mfg. in Naperville, Illinois and later for Flexsteel Industries in Dubuque, Iowa.

Don married Catherine (Wilson) Opper on December 26, 1959 at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in La Grange, Illinois. Don cherished every moment spent with his four children and later, his grandchildren. He marked time through milestones celebrated with his family, including birthdays, weddings, graduations and holidays. Although his ultimate goal to be at a grandchild’s wedding will not be realized, Don created many lasting memories for his family.

He loved to garden and could be found in his yard and at any one of his children’s homes, planting, pruning, watering and always, advising.

Don is survived by his wife Catherine Wilson Opper; four children: Thomas Opper, of Dubuque, IA; Margaret “Peggy” (Mark) Gulick, of Spirit Lake, IA; Susan (Mark) Pasquella, of Lake Forest, IL; Paul Opper, of Madison, WI. Grandchildren include Hannah, Maddie, Catherine, and Sarah Gulick; Jack, Michael, and Catherine Pasquella and Lucas Opper. His family will miss him dearly.

Don was preceded in death by his parents Harold Opper and Marietta Cossitt; stepfather Frederick (Fritz) Cossitt, infant son Michael Lawrence and sadly, most recently, his daughter-in-law Stephanie A. Opper.

The family would like to thank Hospice of Dubuque for their compassion and care of Don.

Visitation will be at St. Raphael’s Cathedral on March 16, 2019 from 12:15-1:30pm with Mass from 1:30-2:30pm.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Saturday, March 16th, 2019 | 12:15pm - 1:30pm
    Saturday, March 16th, 2019 12:15pm - 1:30pm
    St. Raphael Cathedral
    231 Bluff St.
    DUBUQUE, IA 52001
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Saturday, March 16th, 2019 | 1:30pm
    Saturday, March 16th, 2019 1:30pm
    St. Raphael Cathedral
    231 Bluff St.
    DUBUQUE, IA 52001
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Private Condolence
Jennifer & Michael Keough, Rick and Kristen Marks, and others have sent flowers to the family of Donald H Opper.
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Jill Schneider

Posted at 01:05pm
Please accept the heartfelt sympathies of the entire Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University (KCAD) community. We are honored that we were able to be part of Donald's journey and deeply saddened by this loss of one of our alumni family.

Chris Gulick

Posted at 05:01pm
Yukiko & I were very sorry to hear of this. Even though I only met Mr. Opper a few times on our trips back to Dubuque, he was always interested in how we were doing in Guam, and we appreciated it. We'll be thinking of him & your family during this difficult time. Chris & Yukiko Gulick

Shawn Stiles

Posted at 09:29am
We are very sorry to hear of the loss of your loved one Don, in these times of sorrow it is nice to know we can find comfort from the scriptures in the Bible. John 5:28 says: Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out. We hope you find these promises from God a comfort to you in your time of sorrow.

Heartfelt Sympathies Store

Posted at 01:50pm
Our warmest condolences and sending you hugs and strength all the way from the Netherlands!
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Heartfelt Sympathies Store purchased flowers for the family of Donald Opper.


Jennifer & Michael Keough

Posted at 12:53pm
Suzy and Mark, Our thoughts and prayers are with your beautiful family at this time. Sending love and hugs your way. Jennifer & Mike Keough
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Jennifer & Michael Keough purchased the The FTD Cherished Friend Bouquet for the family of Donald Opper.


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