Donald Dean Bradley
September 14, 1940 – May 16, 2020
Good night, our cowboy…
Lover of life and Dodie;
man of dry wit,
wrangler of cows
and of kids.
The fire is done,
the embers are out
but the essence
burns in our hearts
It is time…
in our memories.
- pat moberley moore
Donald Dean Bradley, of West Columbia, Texas, passed away at his home on May 16, 2020, with his wife in attendance. On September 14, 1940 Don was born in Jefferson City, Missouri, because that was the closest hospital, but he grew up in Diamond, Missouri. In the late 1970’s he moved to Bay City, Texas to work for Brown and Root at the South Texas Nuclear Project. While in Bay City he met the woman whom he called the “love of his life” on a blind date. He married the love of his life, Dodie Claybourn, a year later. Together they have 20 grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren. Don had an enormous capacity for love and as each child was born his love was never divided, but instead it multiplied to cover all grandchildren and great-grandchildren equally.
He loved being with family, especially the yearly celebrations at his home of Thanksgiving and “Claybourn’s at the Bradley’s.” Don always had a fantastic garden and enjoyed woodworking and carpentry. But his favorite was his cattle and he spent most of his spare time with the cattle.
Don loved to work. He loved to build things and grow things. He loved feeding his animals and his people too! It was said that if it moved, he fed it. Don adored doing his chores with little ones who would watch and learn and just be his little sidekicks. He preferred to share his love of nature and the great outdoors with someone right beside him. That way he could see the joy and happiness that his passions also brought to others.
He led one full and blessed life.
Don was preceded in death by his mother, father, two brothers, two sisters, one daughter-in-law, Beverly Kay Claybourn, and a grandson, Johnathan Claybourn.
He is survived by his wife of 37 years, Dodie Bradley; sons, Robert (Lisa) of Lubbock, Texas and Bill (DeDra) of Plains, Montana; and stepsons, Jody Claybourn (sweetheart, Melinda Williams) of Bay City, Texas, Lane Claybourn (Christine) of Terrell, Texas, and Mike Claybourn (Diana) of Clute, Texas.
Thanks to the congregations of New Shores Church of Sweeny and Wild Peach Community Church for all the food, love, and compassion extended to Don’s family. Words could not express our tremendous gratitude.
Also thanks to C. T. Baker & Sons Funeral Home Director, Kirk Betz and his staff for their patience, caring, and understanding shown to Don’s loved ones in their time of need.
A special thank you to George and Barbara Sue McGuirt and Darrin and Christi Batchelor for their strong love and support, and for always being there at a moment’s notice when help was needed.
Due to COVID-19, a public funeral service will not be held. Hopefully in the future a memorial service can be planned. Please be in prayer for this family as they conduct their own private services.
Memorials may be mailed in Don’s name to WPCC Children’s Ministry, PO Box 1631 Brazoria, Texas 77422.
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