William  Donald Farrimond
William Donald Farrimond

September 19, 1936 - October 30, 2016
Resided in Sacramento, CA
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Remembering Bishop William Donald Farrimond
William Donald Farrimond was born on September 19th 1936, the second child of William and Mary Ann Farrimond, in Laramie Wyoming. His sisters Shirley, Sally and Sheryl are living and his younger brother Robert passed away several years ago.
Don lost his right eye at the age of 11 months due to a retinoblastoma, the first of three cancers that he would have in his life. He spent most of his youth in Wyoming. Don enjoyed exploring the wilderness in Wyoming with his brother, and found several American Indian burial sights and artifacts. Some of these artifacts were placed in a museum in Laramie.
Don's father was a railroad man, and his family moved often. The family lived in several railroad stations, and for a while, lived in a box car with a covered hole in the ground serving as their refrigerator.
Don's family moved to California when he was a teenager. They lived in several isolated areas along the train lines, and for a brief time in Hollywood. Eventually, the family settled in Santa Rosa. After being promoted two grades, he dropped out of high school as a 15 year old senior to work full time to help support his family. He completed his high school coursework by mail and later received his diploma.
At the age of 19, Don became interested in religion. He took his younger brother to all of the churches in Santa Rosa, visiting a new church each Sunday. He had become frustrated with his search, feeling that none of them offered the answer that he was searching for. The last church that he visited was the LDS church. He had seen the steeple of the church from his bedroom window after believing that he had visited all of the churches in the area. From the moment that he entered the building he knew that he was in the right place. He often joked that he said to a church member on that day, "take me to your leader". Even though he wanted to be baptized at that time, he was encouraged to meet with missionaries first. After meeting with the missionaries for one week, he was baptized.
Don met Diane Adair Twigg at his baptism when. She had taken her primary class there to learn about baptisms. Don was six foot four, and the missionary that baptized him was much shorter. Both men fell under the water when Don was baptized. Later that week, at a ward dinner, Don and Diane chatted and laughed about the baptism. Don walked Diane home that evening. It was their first date, 61 years ago.
It was very important to Don that he serve a mission. He worried about leaving his family without his financial contributions, and was worried about the cost of serving a mission. Ultimately he was able to fund his mission by selling his 1954 Chevy Bel Air. 1n 1958 he was called to serve a mission in Mexico. He spent several weeks at the Missionary Training Center in Salt Lake, learning Spanish. The night before he was to leave, he was notified that his calling had changed and that he would be serving his mission in Illinois and Wisconsin. Even though the calling for a stateside mission was only two years, he volunteered to serve the full three years that he had committed to serve during an international mission.
Diane waited the three long years for Don to return. They were married on January 13th, 1961 at the temple in Salt Lake City. While in Salt Lake, Don and Diane served a stake mission. Don attended BYU and the University of Utah. Nancy and Debbie were adopted before the Farrimonds moved back to California in 1964.
Don and Diane purchased a piece of property in Clayton, California. With the help of Diane's brother in law, they built their dream home. While in Clayton, they adopted their son Donald. In 1968, the Farrimonds moved to Sacramento and in 1969, Peter was adopted.
Don and Diane had nearly 50 foster children during their life. Many of them lived with the Farrimonds for weeks or months, some for many years. All were made to feel part of the family.
Don had many jobs in his life. At the age of 9, he began working at a local theater in Laramie, changing signs on the marquee. He sold newspapers on trains at the train station, bailed hay and worked at Foster's Freeze. He took a job working in fruit orchards and brought home the slightly damaged fruit for his family. As a teenager, he began working on the railroad in California. One of Don's stories recounts how he was precariously perched on a metal arm hanging near the track, trying to attach an important telegraph message for an oncoming train, when he fell. He had little time to react, and quickly rolled between the tracks as the train passed over him.
During Don's professional career, he worked for the Sacramento Council of Governments as a city planner for 20 years. He later worked as the deputy director of transportation for El Dorado County. He worked for the last 18 years as a legislative analyst for CalTrans, retiring in May of this year only after learning about his cancer.
Don served for a total of 23 years in the bishopric, twice as bishop. He had tremendous faith in God and in Jesus Christ. With his strong faith, he did not fear death, even during his last days.
More than anything, Don enjoyed teaching. He began teaching seminary in Pleasant Hill in 1964, and taught over 1000 students over a period of 46 years. He woke at 5 am every day, without an alarm clock, and would tell each of his children "Rise and shine, daylight is burning". He would pick up those students that didn't have a way to make it to class, and would then drive students to multiple high school campuses afterward. Don taught at the Institutes of Religion at Sacramento City College and Sacramento State University, and taught at Boy's State annually for many years.
Don is survived by his wife, four children, 11 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren. He has been a wonderful role model for all that were blessed to know him. Don was a loving and devoted husband and never failed to bring his wife flowers home on Friday evening. He was an incredible father, always patient and encouraging. Even as he has passed, his family, and perhaps others, will continue to learn from him.



East Lawn Memorial Park at Graveside
4300 Folsom Bl.
Sacramento, CA , CA 95819
Saturday, November 5, 2016
10:00 AM
East Lawn Memorial Park
4300 Folsom Boulevard
Sacramento, CA US 95819
Saturday, November 5, 2016
10:00 AM