Published: December 28, 2021

IN MEMORIAM: Donald Edward Walsh


Donald Edward Walsh

NOVEMBER 11, 1947 – DECEMBER 22, 2021


Grissom Funeral Home and Crematory

Donald Edward Walsh, age 74, died Wednesday, December 22, 2021.

He is survived by his wife Joanne Ramharter; three nephews - Kevin (Lana) Walsh of Trevor, WI; David William (Heidi) Walsh of Lindenhurst, IL; and Dennis Michael Walsh of IL; and niece Marjory A. Walsh-Griffin, of Antioch, IL. He is pre-deceased by his son Donald Jr., his parents Frank and Margaret Walsh of Antioch, IL, and his brother Frank Walsh, Jr.

Donald was born in Waukegan, IL on November 11, 1947. He grew up in Antioch, IL with political aspirations. After graduating from Dominican College in Racine, WI, he owned Walsh’s All Seasons Sporting Goods and clothing stores for men and women. While operating several stores, he enlisted in the US Marine Corps Reserves and was stationed in Camp Pendleton, CA. Upon returning home, he brought hockey to the Racine and Kenosha areas with the Kenosha Flyers, a semi-professional hockey team he owned which was a member of the Continental Hockey League. As the owner he also played goalie. He had the thrill of playing on the US National Hockey Team against Finland, Sweden, and the Soviet Union.

The closure of the Kenosha hockey rink and subsequently his sporting-goods stores brought Donald to the garment industry as a National Sales Rep for a number of women’s clothing brands. This led to the ownership of his own company manufacturing high-end leather goods in Germany, and Icelandic woolen sweaters and scarves in Iceland.

From there, he decided to pursue his political dreams and ran for the 1st US Congressional District in Wisconsin against Les Aspin. Donald lost, but it paved his entry into Wisconsin government, appointed by Governor Tommy Thompson as Sales Director to the newly formed Wisconsin State Lottery. In 1999, Donald and his wife Joanne relocated to Florida and the Orlando Dr. Phillips area working as a consultant in the Lottery Industry, followed by employment with MDI Entertainment, and then Scientific Games International, located in Alpharetta, GA. He finalized his lottery merchandising career employed by BDA Inc.

Donald enjoyed people and lived life to the fullest as he met and entertained many celebrities. A creative individual by nature, whatever he chose to do he did well. And, he loved his wife and his life. He took responsibility for his in-law’s final years ensuring a quality living environment and lifestyle. He was a good man and no one can replace the hole created by his passing. His ashes will be buried with his parents and his son Donald Jr., in Antioch, IL. May he rest in peace.

© Public Gaming Research Institute. All rights reserved.