Donald Carl Ingham of Williston, VT passed away on October 1, 2019 with his devoted wife, Brenda, at his side, and after a 15-year struggle with prostate cancer. He was born on June 23, 1946 at the Mary Fletcher Hospital in Burlington to Lynn H. Ingham and Muriel (nee Densmore) Ingham of Burlington, and grew up in Vermont with brothers Raymond of Huntington, VT (married to Nita Ingham), and David of Saranac, NY (married to Sylvia Ingham), and sister Judy Cota of Williston (married to Wesley Cota).
Don graduated from South Burlington High School in 1964 and immediately enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where he received training in electronics and reached the grade of 3rd Class Petty Officer (E4). After being released from service with an honorable discharge in 1967, he was qualified for training under the G.I. Bill, which allowed him to be the first to enter a pilot training program at Northern Airways in South Burlington. With his independent study of aviation, he passed his pilot license exams in 1968. After 46 years of service as the corporate pilot for Pizzagalli Construction/PC Construction, he retired in 2016 at the age of 70. During this time he landed at all contiguous 48 states of the U.S., as well as taking multiple trips to Greenland, of which a 5-day stay on the Greenland Ice Cap was the event of his life. His love of flying led, in part, to his longtime deep friendship with Al Martin, as well as Chaz Cook, his co-pilot for over 25 years.
On August 22, 1970, he married Brenda Shepard, the light of his life. In addition to Brenda, he leaves two sons, Aaron Ingham of Marshfield, VT (married to Patricia Lynch) and Daniel Ingham of Huntington, VT (with partner Bekah Kutt); two grandchildren, Shea and Lucas Ingham; and their mother, Mary Cote; a god daughter, Amy Seoane (husband Justin Houghton); his mother-in-law, Louise Shepard; as well as a large number of nieces and nephews.
Don also had a love of boating, and after self-study, passed his Coast Guard Captain’s License. Together with Al Martin, he had the opportunity to sail the entire intracoastal waterway, from the Gulf of Mexico to Lake Champlain and on up to Quebec City in Canada. Although most people wait until after retirement to travel, he was fortunate to have the opportunity to travel throughout his adult life.
Because their wedding anniversaries are on the same hour, day and year, both he and Brenda enjoyed many trips together with Kurt and Joyce Oughstun of Williston, cruising the Caribbean, parts of Central and South America, including the Panama Canal, and finally enjoying a land-sea cruise from Denali, Alaska to Glacier Bay and on to Vancouver, Canada. His most memorial family trip was spent driving a rental truck from Phoenix, AZ to Marshfield, VT with his brother David as they moved his son Aaron and wife Patty back to their home state.
Most anyone who sat down and talked with Don for just a few minutes became his friend for life. Donald is thankful for having the opportunity to say goodbye to so many of his family and friends during his stay in the McClure Miller Respite House in Colchester. He could not say enough about his love for his wife Brenda throughout their adult life together. He has no regrets for the life he has led. He will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved him.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Don’s memory can be made to McClure Miller Respite House, c/o UVM Health Network Home Health and Hospice, 1110 Prim Road, Colchester, VT 05446 or online at https://www.uvmhomehealth.org/donations/make-an-online-donation/.
A celebration of Don’s life will be held on October 12, 2019 at 2:30 p.m. at the Main Street Landing Performing Arts Center Film House, Third Floor of the Lake and College Building, at 60 Lake Street, Burlington, VT.
Arrangements are in care of Gifford Funeral Home, 22 Depot Street, Richmond, VT.