Donald Dean Gunderson Jr. was born in Portland, Oregon to Donald Dean Gunderson & Dorothy Marie Brown Gunderson on May 21 st , 1952, joining his two sisters, Sandy and Susan at home in Oak Grove, Oregon. Don attended Oak Grove Grade School and Rex Putnam High School, graduating with the class of 1970. Don attended Mount Hood Community College as a music major and member of the award-winning Mt. Hood Jazz Band. At 20 years of age, Don gave his life to Jesus and began to fulfill his two life-long callings—music and ministry. In 1983, after about a decade of working in the lumber industry and as part-owner of his own lumber company, Don decided to sell his business interests and transition into full-time music ministry. He would go on to study Bible at Puget Sound Christian College, while also serving on the faculty as Instructor of Music. Over the next 36 years, Don would serve on staff at six different churches as worship and associate pastor, serving in a wide-variety of leadership roles. During this time, he was also heavily involved with a variety of music ministries and outreach events throughout the Portland area—ministering to thousands of people. After all this, Don medically-retired in June of 2019 and he and his wife, Rhonda, moved to Burns, Oregon—a place he grew to love and call home. And it was there that Don passed away peacefully on February 13 th , 2022. Don had a passion for music and ministry, and he definitely made his mark in those areas. However, that’s not what we remember most about him. As devoted as Don was to music and ministry, he was more devoted to his family and friends. He was the kind of guy who valued his relationships, and was more concerned with others than himself. In-fact, he loved connecting with all sorts of people. He loved talking with them, and hearing their stories, and asking them one question after another to try and figure ‘em out. But, more than anything else, Don wanted people to discover the love of Jesus like he had, so he tried his best to show that same love to the people in his life. Don was a uniquely special and gifted man, whom we are going to miss so much. Don is survived by his wife, Rhonda Gunderson; his sons Greg (Tonya) Gunderson and Patrick Gunderson; daughters, Mackenzie Dunham and Reanna Gunderson; sister, Sandra Benton; step-daughters, Julia (Joe) Paz, Crystal Crockett, and Natasha (Steven) Montague; as well as 13 grandchildren, 1 great-granddaughter, and numerous nieces and nephews. Don was preceded in death by his father, Donald Gunderson; mother, Dorothy Marie Gunderson; brother, Richard Gunderson; sister, Susan Gunderson; and former spouse Kelly Church (Gunderson). We will be celebrating Don’s life on Saturday, April 30 th, at 1pm at Northwest Christian Church Newberg Campus (2315 Villa Rd Suite 100, Newberg, OR 97132), and all are welcome to join in the celebration. In lieu of flowers or gifts, please make a donation on behalf of Don Gunderson to: Life 4 Square, 74 S. Alvord, Burns, Oregon 97720…….. Thank you.
Life 4 Square
74 S. Alvord Ave., BURNS OR 97720