Donald Astin Macfarlane, age 78, passed away at Utah Valley Hospital in Provo, Utah on March 26, 2019, after a period of declining health. He was born in Cedar City, Utah on September 27, 1940 to Keith Matheson and Lucile (Astin) Macfarlane.
From an early age, Donald loved art (especially drawing), performing, and humor, and spent time developing these talents. As he honed them, they became defining characteristics of his life, and he is remembered by many for his creativity, imagination, and ability to make people laugh.
Growing up mostly in Provo, Orem, and Salt Lake City, he attended East High School and developed many friendships and associations. One of his most fondly remembered seasons of life was serving in the U.S. Army Reserves, where he was trained as a military photographer. Photography became a favorite hobby, and he loved the challenge of getting photos to turn out just right.
Donald served as a missionary in the Northeastern States Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1960-1962, assigned mostly to areas in Pennsylvania. After his mission, he attended BYU where he earned BA, MA and MFA degrees. He always enjoyed staying connected to BYU, and particularly enjoyed watching BYU basketball games.
Donald married Ruth Elizabeth Christensen on November 7, 1969 in the Salt Lake Temple and they became the parents of nine children. They were later divorced.
During his career, Donald spent 22 years as a member of the art faculty at the University of Northern Colorado, and among his personal effects are many notes of appreciation from his students. Some of his proudest accomplishments were his professional art shows. He produced many still-lifes, landscapes, portraits, and character drawings in various media, but especially in pencil, oil, and watercolor. He was remarkably talented at figure drawing and portraits.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Keith and Lucile; a sister, Lois Buchanan of Payson, UT; and a brother, Keith Macfarlane of American Fork, UT. His brother and sister were his best friends in life and he missed them dearly in the years following their passing.
Donald faced many challenges in his life and carried many burdens. His transition to the next life was peaceful and accompanied by a feeling of hope and opportunity for healing.
He is survived by 6 sons, 3 daughters, 21 grandchildren, and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
A viewing will take place from 6:00 p.m.- 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3, 2019 at Legacy Mortuary, 3595 N Main St, Spanish Fork, Utah.
A memorial service will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, April 5, 2019 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1750 East 750 South, Spanish Fork, Utah.