Donnie Dean Hill, 81, of North Little Rock passed away Wednesday, July 25th. Donnie was born in Alicia, Arkansas to parents W. L. Thompson, Jr. and Ruth Childers Thompson. A gifted athlete, at 17 Donnie was recruited by the Chicago Cubs baseball team but his mother would not sign the papers due to his age. He served his country in the U. S. Army, 11th Airborne Division during the Vietnam War. Donnie attended ASU and went on to graduate from the University of Maryland with an Engineering degree in Radiology Electrical Engineering.
Donnie was an avid and accomplished hunter and fisherman and loved the outdoors. An excellent storyteller, he wrote many articles for outdoor magazines. He was also a motorcycle enthusiast.
A longtime member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in North Little Rock, Donnie served on the Board and volunteered his service to the church in many ways. A leader in the community, Donnie also was a member of the American Legion, Elk’s Club, North Little Rock NRA (President), Knights of Columbus, American Duck Hunters Association (President) and was a Mason. Donnie also mentored many children and coached softball for many years.
He married the love of his life, Joan D. Hill, on Sept. 7, 1957 and remained her husband and partner for 61 years. Donnie was a loving husband, doting father and grandfather - a great friend and good listener who gave of himself. He was always a happy man and had a great heart-felt laugh. Everyone who knew him loved him.
Donnie was raised on a small family farm in a small community, he raised himself up to build Don’s Weaponry and went on to own multiple businesses.
He was preceded in death by his parents, W.L. and Ruth Thompson; grandparents, Mr. & Mrs. John C. Childers; brother, Bobby Hill and his beloved wife, Joan Hill. He leaves behind his cherished family; daughter Kim Tipton and son-in-law Charles Tipton; grandchildren Joshua Tipton, Sr. and his wife, Rebecca, Jacob Tipton, Lacey Tipton Spradlin and her husband, Erik Spradlin; great-grandchildren Joshua Tipton, Jr., James Tipton, Isabella Tipton, Temperance Spradlin and Archer Spradlin along with many other extended family members as well as special friends Robie and Heidrun Norman and Mark Lisko.
A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Monday, July 30th at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in North Little Rock. Please share your memories of Donnie with his family online at www.griffinleggettresthills.com.