Donald (Donnie) Lewis Needham was born January 19, 1943 at KU Medical Center, in Kansas City, Kansas to his father Barton Lewis Needham and his mother Phoebe Olive Eddy Needham of Lane, Kansas, both preceded him in death. He was the 7th child of 7 children. He is survived by his sister Joy Daulton of Garnett, Kansas. Preceding him in death were his other siblings; Howard, Bill, Laura Bell, Richard, and Lula May Spellman all of Osawatomie.
He married Jackie Sue Bowker March 24, 1962, and they had 3 sons: Barton Lewis Needham, Robert Lee Needham and D.J. Needham, two daughter-in-law, Lina and Lori all of Osawatomie, Kansas. Nine grandchildren: Garrett Barton, Jasper Alan (Alyshia), Dane Michael (Kate), Dylon Shawn (Paige), Jesse Lee (Ashley), Dre Daniel (Mercedes), Jozie Rose, Mandy and Kylee LeNae (Alex) Holy. Eight great grandchildren: Tynlee, Londyn, Kemper, Zendaya, Amelia, Audrey, Axel Holy and Maxie Holy, all survivors. His wife and boys were his world and he tried never to miss a sporting event they were in. He was a proud father and grandfather (Poppy).
Donnie had been a traveling pipeliner with his brother at a very young age, until he met the TRUE love of his life, Jackie. They both knew that they were the ONE for each other. He married and traveled with his wife Jackie. He never missed a stream or a river to fish while working around the different cities and states.
They had little possessions… no matter, they had each other. Then Donnie came home back to his streams, creeks and rivers. He worked as a crane operator for Haggard Heavy Hauling and in 1970 they bought a little house on a hill overlooking a river. The perfect place to teach Bart, Robbie, DJ (then later his grandsons) how to hunt, fish, run lines, camp on the river and troll lakes. He could not have been happier. This team provided fish and meat for years. The family called him the King of the Hill because his family lived on one side of the hill and Jackie’s parents lived on the other.
His well-known and major interests were fishing, hunting and cooking, which he did all of his life. He shared his fish and game with many throughout his life. He stated many times he had a happy and fulfilling life.
He passed away after a long illness on September 15, 2019 with his loving family faithfully by his side. Visitation is at Eddy-Birchard Funeral Home 6-8 pm Wednesday September 18, 2019 and graveside service 11 am Thursday September 19, 2019 at Lane Cemetery in Lane, KS. Memorials will go to the Frank and Rosie Bowker Scholarship fund at the Osawatomie High School.