Donald L. Briggs of Helena, Montana, passed away Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at the age of 83; he was preceded in death by his parents George “Curly” and Rosemonde Briggs, wife Marilynn Briggs, brother Urban Briggs, sister Bernice “Bonnie” Briggs, and brother Robert Duel.
Born on May 20, 1935, in Brainerd, Minnesota, he grew up fishing, trapping, boating, water skiing, and enjoying the outdoors. In 1955, at the Lutheran Church, he married his sweetheart, Marilynn Henkel of Fargo, North Dakota; and the couple had four children. He liked to stay busy and between 1965 and '66, he built a house on Little Floyd lake and ordered a beautiful 1966 Pontiac Grand Prix. His love of cars and Pontiacs continued throughout his life.
In 1980, his favorite movie, Final Countdown hit the theatres; and this same year his creativeness and ingenuity were rewarded when he was granted a U.S patent for an aluminum airplane kit. His love for airplanes and flight was strengthened during his service with the 178th Fighter Squadron of the North Dakota Air National Guard’s Happy Hooligans. Later, after moving to Montana, he continued his service with the 163rd Montana Army National Guard.
In the 1990's, he received his pilot’s license and soon owned an Ercoupe. Whether building ice boats, wood working, archery, or helping others, he always strived to do his work with integrity and excellence. Throughout his life, he never lost his enjoyment for having BBQ’s with family and friends, flying model airplanes, or spending time on the lake.
Donald is survived by his four children, Shawn Briggs of Augusta, Montana; Monte Briggs of Helena, Montana; Darcie Briggs of Idaho Falls, Idaho; Damian Briggs of Helena, Montana; six grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
A celebration of life will be held at 3640 Pelican Road, Helena, Montana, May 18, 2019, at 1:00 p.m. The family is grateful for all those who wish to come share stories and reminisce. Please visit www.retzfuneralhome.com to offer a condolence or leave a memory of Donald.