2018-05-12 / Obituaries

Donald Andress


Donald Andress Donald Andress Donald James Andress, 83, of Mackinac Island, died early Sunday morning, April 22, 2018, at his home, surrounded by family.

Known to Islanders as “The Duck,” he was born January 21, 1935, on Mackinac Island to Joseph and Ruby (nee Perault) Andress and lived on Mackinac Island all of his life.

Mr. Andress attended the Thomas W. Ferry School on Mackinac Island, which his greatgreat grandfather, William H. Andress, helped build in 1838, then Boysville in Jackson and Holy Childhood in Harbor Springs.

After the death of his father, he left school at age 12 to work for Mackinac Island Carriage Tours as a street sweeper, and later worked for Mackinac State Historic Parks as a handyman and carpenter. He opened his own company, Don Andress Construction Inc, and in his retirement worked as a carpenter for Grand Hotel, handcrafting the flower boxes across the front porch for the better part of two decades.

Mr. Andress served in the United States Army from 1958 to 1960 and was stationed in a combat engineer battalion of the 3rd Armored Division in Hanau, Germany. He was an active member of American Legion Post 299 on Mackinac Island.

A descendant of Chief Mackinac, he was a member of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. He was a popular figure leading the annual Lilac Festival Parade for many years.

Mr. Andress was well known for his walking sticks crafted from Island balsam, a skill he learned from his grandfather, James “Big Jimmy” Perault, and great-grandfather, Antonio Perault.

In 2009, one of his walking sticks was accepted by the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.

He is survived by his son, Donald “Jamie” Andress and friend Stephany Morgan of Mackinac Island, a brother and family, Carl and Cora Andress of Hessel, and a sister, Mary Christine Siders of St. Ignace. He is also survived by many cousins, nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews, and his former wife, Diane (nee Bawks) Andress, to whom he remained close.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers Francis “Pat,” Joseph Jr., and Leslie “Butch,” and a sister, Barbara Chambers.

A memorial will be held at a later date.

Dodson Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.

Return to top

Click here for digital edition
2018-05-12 digital edition