Donald Hembree

Donald Edward Hembree, 86, of Sweet Home, died April 15, 2023.

He was born Sept. 29, 1936, in Hartville, Mo. to Raymond and Velma (Smith) Hembree.

In 1954, he moved from Missouri to Idaho to be with Viola. They married on Sept. 3, 1957. They lived in Marsing, Idaho, then moved in 1962 to Idanha. Later that year, they moved to Sweet Home and planted roots.

Sweet Home became Mr. Hembree’s home for the rest of his life.

He worked on a dairy farm when he was in Idaho, and in Oregon he worked in the woods with his father-in-law for a short time. When he moved to Sweet Home, he worked in the local mills.

While in Idaho, Mr. Hembree was very involved in rodeos, bull riding and bronco riding. He eventually became a rodeo clown, dodging bulls and broncos.

He enjoyed bowling for many years, making many friends along the way. The Hembrees took many road trips on their Honda motorcycle with their good friends Buddy and Melba Sorrell. Reno was a favorite destination, but they also went to Missouri and many other places. 

Hunting and fishing was a favorite pastime for Mr. Hembree. He went on many fishing trips over the years – Snake River was a hotspot. It was a place where the whole family would gather for multiple vacations and where catfishing was the most fun. No need to have your own fishing pole, Mr. Hembree always had one for anyone who wanted to fish. He often fished at Foster Lake; he even made the front page of the Albany Democrat-Herald with a trout!

Mr. Hembree is survived by his children, Twilia Cross, Teri and son-in-law Manuel Acosta, and Ron and daughter-in-law Cecilia Hembree; eight grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; and six great-great-grands.

He was preceded in death by his wife Viola in 2017; brother William “Bill”; sister Joretta; great-granddaughter, Haylee in 1992; great-granddaughter Korin in 1997; and great-great- grandson Asher in 2019.

Sweet Home Funeral Chapel is handling the arrangements.