Donald Ira Bailey surrendered to age in Saint Mark's Hospital on the afternoon of November 19, 1990.
He was born August 20, 1912, to Ira Augustus Bailey and Emma Musselman Bailey in a homestead cabin at Viola, Wyoming, a few miles upstream on LaBarge Creek from what is now LaBarge, Wyoming. He was educated by his mother, a school teacher, and in one-room schools until 1925, after which he attended high school in Big Piney, Wyoming.He spent the depths of the Depression working his way through the University of Washington, graduating from its School of Forestry in 1937. While there, he was elected to two professional fraternities, Phi Sigma (in biology) and Xi Sigma Pi (in forestry).
Upon graduation, he went to work for the United States Forest Service, thus beginning a life's career in government service. In the fall of 1938, he moved from the Forest Service to the Department of Interior's fledgling Grazin Service. Ten years later, this agency became the Bureau of Land Management.
During his years at Interior he worked all over the West and held positions in Wyoming, New Mexico, Idaho, and Nevada, before ascending to Washington, D.C.
While stationed in Wyoming he met and married Helen LaTier, a native of Saybrook, Illinois who was teaching in Rawlins. They married on June 18, 1943 and remained so until her death in October, 1975.
Mr. Bailey received military training at the University of Washington and was commissioned as an Ensign in the United States Navy shortly after the outbreak of World War II. He commanded gun crews on merchant ships throughout the Pacific Theater. In 1944, he was made gunnery officer, a rank equivalent to lieutenant, and was among the first Americans to survey the nuclear devastation at Nagasaki following the conquest of Japan. Upon his release from military duty November 5, 1945, he returned to the Bureau of Land Management.
He rose in the BLM, eventually achieving a position from which he directed all of the bureau's real estate transactions. He also supervised land acquisitions for the Alaska Pipeline.
Owing to his wife's failing heatlh, he retired from the BLM in 1970. Following her death in 1975, he returned to Wyoming. He also returned to the BLM for two years, preparing oil, gas and coal environmental impact statements in the Rock Springs area office.
In late 1977, he started courting the sister of Lois Jenkins, a girl he'd dated at Big Piney High School. Lois died in the 1940's, but on New Year's Eve, 1977, he married the eldest Jenkins daughter, Miriam Jenkins Barlow. Her previous husband of 43 years, Senator Norman Barlow, died in 1972. Mr. and Mrs. Bailey remained devoted to one another until his death last Monday. They passed most of those 12 years in Salt Lake City, although they also maintained a residence in Pinedale, Wyoming.
He gave generously of his time and money to a variety of causes, particularly in the environment and natural resource conservation. He was an active member of the Amerian Association of Retired Persons and spent much time each year donating tax preparation for indigent AARP members. He was also a member of the Methodist Church and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
In accordance with his wishes, his body has been donated to the University of Utah Medical School. A memorial service will be held in Pinedale, Wyoming at a time to be announced.
He is survived by: His widow, Miriam Bailey, Salt Lake City and Pinedale; two cousins, Virgil Bailey of Cokeville, Wyoming; Lucretia Paulsen, Omaha, Nebraska; a stepson and daughter-in-law, John Perry and Elaine Barlow; three stepgrandchildren, Leah, Anna Winter, and Amelia Barlow, all of Pinedale.
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