MADISON—Donald Warren Anderson, of Naples, Fla., was reunited with his beloved wife of 65 years, Marilyn (Dixon), on April 12, 2018, at Agrace HospiceCare in Fitchburg. Don affected lives in many ways through his generosity, compassion and guidance, from the board room to the trout stream.
Don met Marilyn at Ripon College, his alma mater, in the spring of 1940, on Friendship weekend. They were married Dec. 12, 1942. For the next four years they traveled to U.S. Army postings. Upon his discharge from the service, they returned to Madison, Wis., where Don continued graduate work in the Business School at the University of Wisconsin. He was a co-founder of Dairyland Insurance, and upon retirement from the company, he and his brother, Robert, started Viking Insurance. In 1982, he sold Viking Insurance. Later he became a partner with John Zimbrick in Dane County Title, and was joined subsequently by Tom Rostad.
Don continued investing in and serving on various profit and nonprofit boards in both Wisconsin and Florida throughout his life. His life of giving of both himself and his financial resources has led to building over 100 homes for Habitat for Humanity in Naples, Fla.; funding the residential facility for Agrace HospiceCare (originally known as the Don and Marilyn Anderson Hospice Center); the Carbone Cancer Center Graft versus Host Disease program; and programs and buildings for Ripon and Edgewood Colleges. He lived his life according to Churchill’s principle of “we make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”
Among Don’s other passions were a love of all things wild. At the age of 97, you were more than likely to find Don fly-fishing on a salmon stream in Alaska, bow hunting on his farm, or rowing a drift boat down the Madison River in Montana. His skills in the outdoors were legendary, bordering on mythical. Don’s willingness to share his knowledge and love of the outdoors with the young and old made him an icon in the wilderness.
He is survived by his children, Susan Ruedisili, Martha and Andrew Van de Ven, Karry and Nadine Anderson, Kathryn and Robert Switzky, and Ronald Anderson and Linda Metoxen; grandchildren, Stephen Ruedisili and Anne Harbison, Robert and Heidi Ruedisili, James and Debra Van de Ven, John Van de Ven, Adam Switzky, Baylee Switzky and her fiancé Eric Brockman, Collin Switzky, Juniper Anderson, Sequoia Anderson, and Cypress Anderson; great-grandchildren, Hanna Rose and Zachary Ruedisili, Charlotte Ruedisili, and Benjamin Van de Ven. Don was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Marilyn; son-in-law, Lon Ruedisili; and great-grandson, Benjamin Stephen Ruedisili.
Visitation will be held at the CRESS FUNERAL HOME, 3610 Speedway Road, Madison, on Wednesday, April 18, 2018, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. A memorial service will be held on Thursday, April 19, 2018, at 11 a.m. at FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, 518 N. Franklin St., Madison. A reception will follow.
In lieu of flowers, Don would appreciate memorial gifts to the Carbone Cancer Center or Agrace HospiceCare Foundation.
Please share your memories at www.cressfuneralservice.com.