Donald Morrison

May 14, 1944 - September 29, 2020

Funeral Details:

Don Morrison of Barrie passed away peacefully at home on September 29 2020 in his 77th year.  Don was the loving husband of Joan (nee Hill) of more than 50 years, and the much-adored father of Heather Sheardown of Hamilton and Lisa Doke (Jeremy) of Pottageville.  He was a wonderful and loving grandfather to Jamie, Lindsay and Lilah.  We were lucky to have been blessed with such a great husband, father and grandfather.  He loved nothing more than family and was, in two words, the best.  He is survived by his brothers, Robert and William and many nieces and nephews, who knew him affectionately as Uncle Billy.  Don was a lover of dogs and was well loved by his many dogs, “grand dogs” and all of the dogs in the neighbourhood who often stopped in for treats.  He was an avid baseball fan, and loved the trips to various games with “his girls”, almost as much as they did.  He loved music, particularly country music and was an excellent guitar player.  He will be missed by his “jam group”.  He had lifelong friendships with many of his former colleagues at CN, after a more than 30-year career.  Everyone in the neighbourhood knew him and he liked nothing more than a visit with them.  He was giving with his time, helping his family, many friends and his neighbours with various projects over the years.  He loved his house and his yard and was happiest when he was at home bantering with his wife. Life won’t be the same without you.  We love you. In the words of Dr. Seuss, “don’t cry because it is over, smile because it happened.”  In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Lung Association.  Online condolences at

Peaceful Transition Simcoe


27 Condolences
  • Rhonda Ramsay
    Posted on: Thursday, October 1, 2020 Reply

    Thinking of all of you.

  • JoAnn Clark
    Posted on: Thursday, October 1, 2020 Reply

    I knew Don from our jam groups. He certainly was a great guitarist and a better singer than some of the Nashville stars,in my opinion. He was always a gentleman and willing to help anyone, even beginners like me. He will be greatly missed. My sympathy goes out to Joan and the rest of the family.

  • Talena Rambarran
    Posted on: Thursday, October 1, 2020 Reply

    Our sincere condolences through this difficult time. From the stories Heather and Lindsay have told, it is clear that Donald was a very special person, an exceptional father and grandfather who was well-loved and will be greatly missed.

  • Frances Lasowski
    Posted on: Thursday, October 1, 2020 Reply

    To Joni, Heather, Lisa and your families,
    I have felt so fortunate to get to know your family and our whole family sends our thoughts and prayers to you at this time. Maple has loved her time with you and will miss Don too. All our love,
    Fran, Kyle, Charlee, Oaklyn & Maple

  • Todd Anderson
    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    So very sorry to hear. Our sincerest condolences and sympathies from our family to yours.

  • Elsbeth & John Tate
    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    We are very sad hearing about Don’s passing. He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and friend. He was kind and thoughtful, caring and a man of talent, humour, helpfulness, connection, and a love of family which we were happy to say, included us. We will miss our numerous telephone conversations checking in with each other during this pandemic. We thought the world of him! Hopefully the wonderful memories you hold so dear and the remembrances of others’ memories of him will help soften the blow of his loss. He was well loved, and so are you! He will be missed by so many! Love to you all!

    John & Elsbeth

  • Stan & Sue
    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    We were very sad to hear of Don’s passing. He was one of a very few people in this world that was
    liked by everyone who knew him. He was just that nice a man. We offer our sympathies to Don’s family and his many friends. He will truly be missed.

    Stan & Sue Ste Croix

    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    I enjoyed jamming and singing with Don for many years. He will be sadly missed. Joe and I send our sincere condolences to Joan and all the family.

    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    I have jammed and sang with Don for many years. When we were in a circle jam he would give me the look from across the room to harmonize with him. He had a beautiful voice and I will miss him singing “The Cowboy Rides Again” Our condolences go out to Joan and the family. May peace be with you all. Doreen and Joe McCarron

  • Ken McDougall
    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    I was truly saddened to hear of Don’s passing and my condolences go to his family. Don was a true gentleman. I got to know and play with Don through the jams run by Terry Calvert. He was very supportive of my learning to play and he never had a bad word to say about anyone. A true class act. Although I only saw him a few times in recent years, I will miss his smile, his gentle nature and his songs.

  • Keith & Debbie Money
    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    Joan we were so sorry to hear of the passing of Don. Sundown to his CN friends! Lot of CN memories & stories.
    Keith & Debbie

  • Terry Calvert
    Posted on: Friday, October 2, 2020 Reply

    I first met Don in January of 2004, when he was the first person to sign up for the BlueSky Bluegrass Club jam session that was held in my former sign studio in Barrie, after being encouraged by his wife Joan to reply to an ad I had placed in the Barrie Banner where I was looking for local Pickers of Bluegrass and Old Tyme Country music. Over the next 15 years or so, Don was a frequent jam session player at many jams held in Grenfel, the Barrie Legion and in his home and several other homes of many club members who hosted the BlueSky Bluegrass Club, where Don’s guitar and fiddle playing, and his renditions of Classic Country music was always appreciated by all those in attendance, my favourite being his soulfull singing of “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain”. Interestingly, Don had a personal dislike for any of the old country songs where there was mention of a “brave enginner” in the lyrics, which Don often would tell me that train engineers were not brave for just doing their job. We often joked that he was my elder and deserved my respect, since he was born two months before me in 1944. Don was a quiet, soft-spoken and gentle man who was much admired by me for his music making ability and for his honest comradship. I offer my condolences to Joan, his children and his grandkids.
    May Don Rest in Peace.

  • Ruud Veldhuizen
    Posted on: Saturday, October 3, 2020 Reply

    My sincere condolences. I only got introduced to Don a little while ago but he sure made an impression. He clearly was a kind, gentle, family man who loved a good story. I am pleased to have seen him “in concert”, playing guitar and singing, just a little while ago.
    Wishing all family and friends lots of strength in the upcoming times,

  • joan eckerman
    Posted on: Saturday, October 3, 2020 Reply

    Sorry for loss, Don will be sadly missed by Ruben and myself. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  • Michael & Mary-Flo Bartley
    Posted on: Sunday, October 4, 2020 Reply

    I first met Don at the Barrie Legion many years ago. I was always impressed by his gentle nature, and friendly demeanor. His choice of songs to sing often offered a glimpse of what was on his mind or in his heart. The essence of a true balladeer! His style of singing and guitar playing tended to captivate his audience and other players in the jam group. Mary-Florence always enjoyed every opportunity to sing harmony with Don, and I was motivated to be a better bass player thanks to Don’s influence and encouragement. Don’s signature song; The Cowboy Rides Away, will always be a reminder of Don in better times. He will be sadly missed by his music jam ‘family’. Our sincere condolences to Don’s family and friends.
    Michael & Mary-Florence Bartley

  • Paul Miller
    Posted on: Sunday, October 4, 2020 Reply

    Don was a wonderful musician and a warm, friendly and welcoming person. I first met him through mutual Gravenhurst friends, in the 60’s. What a delight to reconnect with him through music at the BlueSky Bluegrass Club. He was always ready with a song, had some wonderful memories and stories to share. He will be greatly missed, our lives were better for knowing him. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.

  • Dave & Lorraine Birrell
    Posted on: Sunday, October 4, 2020 Reply

    Among Don’s many talents, was wood working. We enjoyed the days we spent together with Don while he completed the inside trim in our house. Excellent work.
    Gentle soul, always smiling. He will surely be missed.

  • David & Linda Turner
    Posted on: Sunday, October 4, 2020 Reply

    So sad to hear of Don’s passing.

    I first met Don through the Blue Sky Bluegrass Club, and enjoyed playing and singing with him on many occasions. He loved the old country music. One of my favourites that he sang so well is “Today I Started Loving You Again.”
    Don was a big help to us when we moved into our new home on Nelson Street.
    Both Linda and I send our deepest condolences to Joan and the family. We will miss him.

  • Victor & Audrey Nadon
    Posted on: Sunday, October 4, 2020 Reply

    With great sadness we learned of Donnie’s passing. We will always cherish his friendship and good times we had together. To Joan and family we send our sincere condolences….you are in our prayers at this time. At our last get together Donnie didn’t fail to remind me jokingly that I was his BFF. Goodbye my good friend.

    Victor & Audrey

  • Al & Marilyn James
    Posted on: Sunday, October 4, 2020 Reply

    We are sorry to hear of Don’s Passing. He always had a smile and made you smile and laugh.
    I enjoyed the many years working with Don, and all the great times we had.
    He will be sadly missed.
    The sun my have gone down but memories will shine forever.
    Til we meet again.

  • Tom Arnold
    Posted on: Monday, October 5, 2020 Reply

    I got to know Don as he attended our bluegrass jams. I particularly enjoyed his rendition of “Blue Moon of Kentucky” where he started out slowly then ramped up to warp speed! Don was a kind, thoughtful person who made the world a better place.
    Tom Arnold

  • Tom Arnold
    Posted on: Tuesday, October 6, 2020 Reply

    I got to know Don during our bluegrass jams. I loved his version of “Blue Moon of Kentucky” where he started out real slow, then ramped up to warp speed! He was kind, thoughtful and considerate of others. Ellen and I will miss him, as will countless others.

  • Mark Blake
    Posted on: Wednesday, October 7, 2020 Reply

    So sad of hearing of Don’s passing. I met Don by a chance encounter with a common friend. He immediately welcomed me into his music world. That was Don, a big smile and a big heart. I was new to playing music and Don was very supportive and introduced me to a new world of music. We were blessed with Don’s singing and guitar playing. Every week, we waited to hear Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain and The Cowboy Rides Away…and once in a while Don would say “ok, I’m going try a new one, I’ve practiced it, let’s see how it goes…and he’d strum to a new song. I am thankful to have shared memories with Don. He truly embodied what it meant to be a gentleman, and he will certainly be missed.

  • Danny and Peggy Behun
    Posted on: Friday, October 9, 2020 Reply

    Peg and I were very sorry to hear about Don’s passing, he was a great co-worker and I enjoyed many of the rail trips I got to work with him. He was also a great supporter of our Ball Team, and a great coach. I loved our occasional musical jam sessions, and how he enjoyed playing the guitar. Our condolences to Joan and all the family.

  • Danny and Peggy Behun
    Posted on: Saturday, October 10, 2020 Reply

    We were saddened when we heard the passing of Don, our condolences and sympathy to Joan and all the family, Don was a very happy person to work with, and he was friend when you needed one. I remember him when we played together a few times for a music session, and all the times he helped with our baseball team. He will be missed greatly.

  • Doug Briscoe
    Posted on: Saturday, October 10, 2020 Reply

    Always loved working with Don. He was a very good railroader. Gonna miss him going by the house and chatting. He also had the patience of a saint when he coached the Leaky Roofers.

  • Marc Gratton
    Posted on: Thursday, October 15, 2020 Reply

    There’s not enough words to express how much his friendship meant to me. I will miss all the conversations we had over coffee at the kitchen table or sitting at the front or in the gazebo. Besides the talks that we had I will miss making you laugh with my vast collections of jokes. We had good times and I will miss them. Don you were a true friend. One of a kind.
    Joan, Heather, Lisa and all the family I’m so truly sorry for your loss and he loved each and everyone of you so very much. My sincerest and deepest of condolences to all of you.
    Buddy, I always wanted to show you my camping pics so at least I can post one of them here. Love you forever Don.

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