Senator Donald E. Gettings View All Years

Compiled Historical Information
Date of Death: 6/13/2011
Birth Place: Ottumwa, Iowa
Birth County: Wapello
Party Affiliation: Democrat
Assemblies Served:
Senate: 70 (1983) - 77 (1997)
House: 67 (1977) - 69 (1981)
Home County: Wapello
Donald E. Gettings
Wapello County


Donald Gettings was born on November 23, 1923, in Ottumwa, Iowa, to Thomas and Sabina Ruffing-Gettings. He passed away on June 13, 2011, at the age of 87. He is survived by his wife, Mary; children, Gregory and Melinda; stepchildren, George, Steve, and Marie; nine grandchildren, Jeremy, Ryan, Jami, Kathryn, Samuel, Amy, Nicholas, Sammy, and Alana; and great-grandchild, Madison.

Gettings attended Ottumwa High School, where he graduated in 1942. After graduation he became a machine repairman at John Deere Ottumwa Works, where he worked for 38 years until his retirement.

He married his first wife, Beverly Gustavison, on September 6, 1947, who preceded him in death on February 8, 1988. He was remarried on December 1, 1991, to Mary Callas.

Gettings’ long and distinguished political career began in 1976, when he was a national delegate to the Democratic Convention in New York City. He was elected to the Iowa House of Representatives in 1977, serving three terms. Then he went on to serve eight terms in the Iowa Senate, before retiring in 1999.

Gettings was active in many community projects and organizations. He was a board member of John Deere Credit Union, Iowa Association of Credit Unions, Iowa Gothic House committee, United Auto Workers Local #74, Eagles Lodge #114, and St. Patrick Catholic Church.

Gettings was a Wapello County Democrat. He served in the Iowa House of Representatives from 1977-1983 during the 67th, 68th, and 69th General Assemblies. He served in the Iowa Senate from 1983-1999 during the 70th, 71st, 72nd, 73rd, 74th, 75th, 76th, and 77th General Assemblies.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE EIGHTY-FIFTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF IOWA: That in the passing of the Honorable Donald Gettings, the State has lost an honored citizen and faithful and useful public servant, and that the Senate by this resolution expresses its appreciation of his service to the State and tenders its sympathy and kindest regards to the members of his family.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: That a copy of this resolution be spread upon the Journal of the Senate and that the Secretary of the Senate be instructed to forward an enrolled copy to the family of the deceased.