Patrolman Donald Campbell Jr.

Don Campbell Jr. was born to Donald Reed Campbell Sr., and Myrtle F. Witham on April 23, 1923, in Ekalaka, Montana.  The family moved to Spokane in 1936, where his father worked as a stock buyer and truck driver.

 

Campbell graduated from Rogers High School in 1940, and soon after joined the United States Army infantry, following in the footsteps of his father who served in World War I.  Campbell’s four year, 10-month tour included time in the South Pacific during World War II, rising to the rank of second lieutenant.

 

After returning home, Campbell determined his need to serve his country and community was not over.  He joined the Washington State Highway Patrol as a vehicle inspector in Vancouver on September 7, 1945 and transferred to Spokane one month later.

 

While working as a vehicle inspector, Campbell married his wife Anita Hagen on June 4, 1947, in Spokane, and eventually grew to a family of three with the addition of their daughter, Rhonda Rae.

Campbell was commissioned as a Washington State Highway Patrolman on May 1, 1948, assigned to Vancouver.  He transferred to his final assignment in Battle Ground in April 1949.

Patrolman Don Campbell Jr. died on December 21, 1951, at the age of 28.  Patrolman Campbell Jr. was struck by a truck while directing traffic around a stalled truck on the Pacific Highway near Vancouver.  At the time of his death, Patrolman Campbell Jr. had served six years with the Washington State Patrol.

 

He was survived by his wife and daughter, and later laid to rest in Bofer, Montana.

Over the years, the Washington State Patrol has lost contact with Patrolman Campbell Jr.'s family.  If you have any information on members of Patrolman Campbell Jr.'s family, please contact Megan King at (360) 597-4411 or wspmemorialfoundation@gmail.com.

In May of 1998, Patrolman Campbell Jr. was awarded the Medal of Honor, posthumously, for his actions on December 21, 1951, by the Law Enforcement – Medal of Honor Committee.

Please take a moment to remember Patrolman Campbell Jr. and his family.

Washington State Highway Patrol

Patrolman Donald R. Campbell, Jr.
End of Watch – December 21, 1951
Gone But Never Forgotten

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