Donald George Ryan

May 17, 1957 – November 30, 2019
Donald George Ryan was born May 17, 1957 to Michael and Margaret Ryan of South Wapiti, Grovedale, Alberta. Donald attended schools: Penson Elementary, Grovedale; Harry Balfour School, Grand Prairie and graduated from Grand Prairie Composite High School in 1975. He attended Fairview College from 1977 to 1978studyingagriculture. Donald worked on the family farm raising pigs until 1983 when the water pump fell into the well. Around that time, he started buying cows. His first purchase was five bred cows, losing one that winter. This started his lifelong 40 year career in cattle. You could count on him being at the auction marts in Grand Prairie, Beaverlodge, Dawson Creek and Ponoka. He enjoyed being at the markets and knew and loved his career choice. He made a lot of good friends in the cattle industry. Donald worked hard building up his place, the “Yellowhead Ranch.” He met his wife Cheryl Kelley in 2007 and married November 19, 2008. They continued to ranch until March 2019 when Donald was diagnosed with brain cancer. Donald enjoyed his cows, neighbors, family, chuck wagon racing and traveling. He volunteered at the Ponoka Stampede for several years also worked with 4-H and the Grovedale Community Fair. He will be sadly missed by his wife Cheryl; two stepsons James Cotton and Jason (Denae) Cotton; his grandson Alexander; granddaughter Rory; parents Michael Ryan and Margaret (Peter) Aleman; sisters Leona (Kelly) Eyben, Barbara (Darcy) Sask and Patricia (Kenny) Trarback; his brother Thomas (Shelly) Ryan; as well as many nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews. Donald was predeceased by his grandparents James and Edith Ryan and George and Anne Stoll.
A Celebration of Donald’s life will be held at the Grovedale Community Hall at 2 pm on Saturday, December 7, 2019. To express condolences to Donald’s family, please visit
Arrangements Entrusted To Ponoka Funeral Home
~ A Wombold Family Funeral Home ~
Ponoka Funeral Home

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