Cover photo for Donald Grell's Obituary
Donald Grell Profile Photo

Donald Grell

November 19, 1934 — April 3, 2023

Donald E. Grell, 88, of Kalispell passed away peacefully on April 3, 2023.  He was born on November 19, 1934, in Hutchinson, Minnesota, to William H. and Lucille A. (Lasky) Grell.   His younger brother Douglas joined the family seven years later.   Don grew up in New Germany, MN, and attended Norwood-Young America High School where he liked to say he would have been the star basketball and track athlete if only he had a car to drive back and forth from practice, some 30 miles away.

After graduating high school, Don attended St. Thomas University in St. Paul, MN.  He was an ROTC cadet and earned a B.A. in Business Administration in 1956. He met Jean L. Stueve at a mixer dance while she was attending the College of St. Catherine, and the two were married in June, 1957 in St. Cloud, MN.

Don began his business life working at his father’s bank, the First State Bank of New Germany from 1956 to 1960, and then joined Norwest Bank of Minneapolis from 1960 – 1976.      Don made a big location change by moving the family to Kalispell, MT as Vice-President of the Wells Fargo Bank from 1976 to 1990.  Don took early retirement from the Bank to begin his new hospitality career as co-owner/manager of the Days Inn Kalispell from 1990 to 2000.  He made his second retirement, from the hotel, in 2000 to thereafter happily spend all winter months as a snowbird in Phoenix, AZ, playing golf; followed by happy summer months in Kalispell, playing golf.

Don & Jean’s family was growing and changing throughout those years, with daughters Lois, Diane, Carol and Nancy joining the family while in Minnesota and son Brian joining after the move to Montana.

Don was active in his local church and community throughout his life, with membership on the St. Matthew’s Parish Council, directorship of the Flathead Association for Catholic Education (FACE), membership in the Kiwanis Club, and various soccer-dad activities.

Don loved to participate in sports, especially pheasant and duck hunting, fishing (oh those sunfish and crappies in the Minnesota lakes), bowling and golf, golf, golf.  Don the sports-aholic also followed many professional sports and never missed Twins baseball, Vikings football, Gonzaga basketball, or literally any other sport being shown on TV.  He was even involved in imaginary sports through his fantasy football league for over 40 years.

Don was also a world traveler, organizing family vacations in the station wagon from coast-to-coast and exotic trips including Bermuda, Mexico (he was always happy to report his somewhat-less-than-satisfactory experience with the Mexico City Police), Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Istanbul, Greece, and Italy.

Don was a dedicated worker, great father, husband, friend and contributor to his community and profession(s). Above all he will be remembered for his fine and sometimes pointed sense of humor.  Don loved to laugh and needle all about him, and it’s fair to say he spent a large part of his 88 years doing just that.

Don was preceded in death by his parents.  He is survived by his brother Douglas R. (Marilyn) Grell, his wife Jean, daughters Lois (Joel), Diane, Carol (Tim), Nancy (Vincent), and son Brian  (Kylene); grandchildren Caroline (Garrett), Anders (Annie), Tyler (Jen), Nathan (Elizabeth), Casey, Monica (Tucker), Cameron (Baylee), Eddy and Margaret, along with five great-grandchildren, Malcolm, Barrett, Wesley, Lucy and Ella.

Funeral arrangements are being made by Buffalo Hills Funeral Home.  A prayer vigil will be held Thursday, April 13 at 6:00 pm. at Buffalo Hills Funeral Home.  Funeral Mass will be held at St. Matthew’s Catholic Church on Friday, April 14 at 11:00 a.m    (streaming on YouTube at St. Matthew’s Parish Kalispell). Following the service will be an interment at Glacier Memorial Gardens, and a reception at St. Matthew’s Church.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to Flathead Association for Catholic Education (FACE) through St. Matthew’s Parish, or Gonzaga University School of Law.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Donald Grell, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Rosary

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Starts at 6:00 pm (Mountain time)

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Buffalo Hill Funeral Home

MT

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Funeral Mass

Friday, April 14, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Mountain time)

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St. Matthews Catholic Parish (Glacier Memorial Gardens)

MT

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Interment

Friday, April 14, 2023

Starts at 12:00 pm (Mountain time)

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Glacier Memorial Gardens


Kalispell, MT 59901

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