Cover photo for Don S. Havens's Obituary
Don S. Havens Profile Photo
1945 Don 2019

Don S. Havens

July 29, 1945 — December 13, 2019

Donald Scott Havens, 74, passed away on December 13, 2019, from complications of Crohn’s disease. He passed peacefully surrounded by his loving family at the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center in Indianapolis.

Don was born July 29, 1945, in Elwood, Indiana to Alfred and Dorothy (Traylor) Havens. He grew up in Tipton and his leadership skills started early in life, serving as Tipton High School’s class President all four years. He graduated from Tipton High School in 1963 and furthered his education at Indiana University in Bloomington Indiana. In 1965, Don became a reporter and editor for the Kokomo Morning Times, a position he held until 1967. A Vietnam Veteran, he was called into service for the United States Army in 1967. He was honorably discharged in 1969. His training and experiences in the military helped prepare him for the next four decades of leadership roles in the public and private sectors.

Don returned to Tipton and was a manager with Anixter Brothers, a wire manufacturing company in Tipton. In 1975, Don started Havens Realty, where he was at the helm for over 45 years, continuing to grow the business and further strengthen the local community. He was a founding member of the Tipton Economic Development Corporation, a group created to help strengthen and develop the Tipton business community.

Don spent a total of 20 years in elected office, never losing an election. He served 12 years on the Tipton Utility Service Board. His service record over 12 years as a member of the Tipton City Council solidified his reputation as an outstanding civic leader.

Later in his career, Don was elected to two consecutive 4-year terms as Mayor of Tipton, first in 2011 and again in 2015. His experience and leadership as mayor helped guide the continued success of Tipton’s economy. For example, working together with fellow city and state leaders, Mayor Don attracted Chrysler FCA to bring operations to Tipton County, a massive investment in the county. Also, Mayor Don was instrumental in the creation of the Tipton Main Street Association, a volunteer organization working to beautify and build a better city. Recent projects have focused on the beautification of the downtown area, with landscaping and flower planting transforming downtown Tipton into a vibrant and exciting center for public gatherings. The Alley project, for example, revamped an empty downtown alley into an engaging gathering place for the residents and visitors to come and enjoy the heart of the city. Additionally, a new irrigation system at the municipal golf course, a splash pad, and major renovations to the public pool have enhanced the city assets and improved Tipton’s “Quality of Place” for the community.

For over four decades, Don consistently served Tipton’s best interests, as a member of the Utility Service Board and the City Council, and as Mayor. His career record in government proved him to be an honest, ethical, and transformative public servant who positively impacted the citizens of Tipton.

Don loved his family, friends, community and country. Don’s pastime pleasures included golf, 6-handed hearts, fishing on the French River, reading books, the daily WSJ, watching the news and kibitzing. Don was known for his eloquent writing and speaking abilities, able to clearly and persuasively express himself while remaining polite and respectful.

Don is survived by his wife, Tami Noble Brown; children Alison Havens and Josh (Marisa) Havens; stepsons Robert (Tiare) Brown and Patrick Brown; grandchildren Preston, Levi and Maxwell Allen and Jack Brown, (two more grandchildren are expected in February 2020). Don has two older sisters who survive, Marilyn (Jim) Shaver, Nancy (Richard) Covely; and a niece and three nephews. Don is also survived by his first wife, Lisa Havens (Will Case).

The family would like to thank the staff at the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center for their excellent care during Don’s final days.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 21, at West Street Christian Church, 132 N. West Street, Tipton, with Rev Linda McKiernan-Allen officiating. Burial will be at Fairview Cemetery in Tipton.

Visitation will be held from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday, December 20, at West Street with an Elk’s memorial service at 8:00 p.m. and also from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. on Saturday prior to the funeral.  Young-Nichols Funeral Home is assisting the Havens family with arrangements.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, 733 Third Avenue, Suite 510, New York, NY, 10017; West Street Christian Church, 132 N. West Street, Tipton, Indiana, 46072;  IU Health Foundation – Tipton Hospital, 1000 South Main Street, Tipton, Indiana, 46072; or the Encore Lifestyle & Enrichment Center through the Tipton County Foundation. Please mail to the Tipton County Foundation at P.O. Box 412, Tipton, Indiana, 46072. Please write “Don Havens-Encore” on the memo line so that the Encore Center will receive a matching donation from the Tipton County Foundation.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Don S. Havens, please visit our flower store.

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