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Donald Hagan

Des Moines

Donald V. Hagan, 88, died May 2, 2019, from complications of a respiratory illness. His family was by his side. Don was born July 2, 1930, on the Hagan farm in Atkins, Iowa, to Chester and Mabel Hagan. He graduated from Atkins High School and went on to serve his country during the Korean War in the United States Air Force from 1951 to 1954. He was stationed in many places, including Wiesbaden, Germany. After his military service, he received a bachelor's degree from Iowa State University. Don married the love of his life, Dorothy (Meek) Hagan, in 1960. He then completed his degree in dentistry at the University of Iowa, following which he and Dottie lived in many different states during his time in public health service. After completing his specialty training in orthodontics, he and Dottie spent the last 50 years in Des Moines and the last 18 years wintering in Tucson, Ariz.
Don was a lifelong learner, always eager to master a new skill. He was a dedicated orthodontist by profession and was known to recognize the teeth of former patients many years later. To this day, he is responsible for many perfect smiles in Des Moines. Although he chose dentistry, Don could have pursued many other careers
— he was raised a farmer and always kept one foot in the farming business, he worked at a car repair shop in his early 20s, and he could fix just about anything inside or outside a house.
Don's life outside of work consisted of family, barbershop harmony, cycling and photography. He took so much pleasure in his family. Despite his busy work schedule, he was always present for the kids and grandkids. He sang bass in numerous barbershop quartets and choruses dating back to the 1960s, and was a proud member of barbershop choruses in both Des Moines and Tucson. A yearly highlight was attending the International Barbershop competition with lifelong friends. Don was an avid cyclist, completing many trips across Iowa and surrounding states with the Pugsley group, his bike group of more than 30 years. Every year from 1981 to 2010, he and the group rode a weeklong bike trip. Don was great to have around if something went wrong with your bike on the side of a remote Iowa highway. He also spent many years devoted to photography, particularly black and white photos, belonging to camera groups in both Tucson and Des Moines. Always eager to learn about new technology, he embraced digital photography, and there wasn't a MacBook, Apple watch or digital editing program he couldn't master.
He is survived by countless loved ones and friends, including children, Doug Hagan (Cindy), Jeff Hagan (Malisa), Cindy Johnson (Charlie) and Christy Hagan (Sam LaRoque); nine grandchildren, Stephanie, Matthew, Graham, Leila, Farah, Cooper, Hailey, Jacob and Ben; and a sister, Elsie Jane (Hagan) Petersen. He was preceded in death last year by Dottie, his wife of 57 years.
An open house celebration for Don's life will be held on Saturday, Sept. 21, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Jasper Winery, 2400 George Flagg Pkwy., Des Moines, Iowa. Please join us for drinks and appetizers to remember his well-lived life. In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to Don's barbershop chorus of 51 years, the Harmony Delegation Chorus (formerly the Pride of Iowa Chorus). Please visit https://harmonydelegation.com/donation or mail memorial donations to Harmony Delegation Chorus, 2603 Lynner Dr., Des Moines, IA 50310.
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