Don A. Worden, 87, of Pahrump, NV, passed away on March 26, 2022.
He passed away peacefully at Inspirations Senior Living in Pahrump after several years battling dementia. The family greatly appreciates the care and compassion that the staff of Inspirations showed Don the last 6 years.
Don was born in Safford, Arizona to Amos and Mildred Worden. Mildred passed away giving birth to Don, and he was primarily raised by his aunt and uncle Olive and Alton Hildreth. After graduation from Safford High School, Don earned a bachelor's degree in biology from the University of Arizona before being drafted into the U.S. Army and serving as a medic in Germany towards the end of the Korean War. Upon returning from service, Don completed a masters degree in business education from Arizona State University. He later completed a masters in education administration at Northern Arizona University.
Don married his first wife Shirley and with their son Michael settled in Willcox, Arizona where he began his career as an educator. He taught high school biology, business, and coached football for a few years before then becoming the principal at Willcox High School.
In 1973, Don and second wife Nell, along with their children Tim, JoJo, and Robert moved to Pahrump, NV where Don became the first principal of Pahrump Valley High School where he led until 1983. Don then went on to serve as principal of J.G. Johnson Elementary School in Pahrump until his retirement from the Nye County School District in 1990. After retiring, he was elected to the Nye County School Board of Trustees and served on the board for 6 years. Don was a stalwart believer in education and an advocate for students and teachers. In honor of his service to Pahrump schools and athletics, he was inducted as an inaugural member of the Pahrump Valley High School Athletics Hall of Fame.
In his later years, Don married his third wife Carolyn and his family grew with her children Kimberly, Samantha, Travis, and Casey. He was broken hearted when he and the kids lost Carolyn with her passing in 2011.
Don always found the most happiness on the sidelines of a sporting event. Pacing the gym or field as a principal and most often as a father and grandfather watching his kids and grandkids play their many sports. He was also a lifelong Dallas Cowboys fan. In his retirement years, he would often be seen around the community with one or more grandchildren in tow to get their daily ice cream bar.
Don is survived by his children: son Tim Worden (Paula) - Gilbert, AZ and grandchildren Ariea Daley (Kiernan), Jake Ramirez, and Jayme Worden, daughter JoJo Brunelle (John) - Boise, ID and grandson Jeff Brunelle (Zoe) with great-grandchildren Evie and Collins and granddaughter Cassie Brunelle, son Michael Worden (Well) - Crockett, CA, son Robert Worden (Sandra) - Maple Grove, MN and grandson Anthony Worden (Laura) with great-granddaughter Annetta and grandson Marc Worden, daughter Kimberly Huff (Andrew) - Las Vegas, NV and grandchildren Taylor, Noah, and Kurian, daughter Samantha Ebarb (Dominic) - Pahrump, NV and grandchildren Ava and Dominic, son Travis Ebarb - Las Vegas, NV and grandson Gray, and daughter Casey Bravo - Reno, NV and grandchildren Ayden, Austin, and Allie. Don is also survived by his lifelong friends that were always considered family Robert "Bob" and Joyce Rogers. He was preceded in passing by his parents Amos and Mildred, his brother Larry, first wife Shirley, and third wife Carolyn.
A memorial and celebration of life will be held at Pahrump Family Mortuary on Monday, May 23, 2022 at 4:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages remembrance donations to be made to the Pahrump Valley High School Athletic Dept. or the youth organization of choice.