Don E. Roberts, 79, Noblesville, died Feb. 11 at Riverview Hospital as the result of a stroke. He was born March 24, 1937, to Aaron and Maggie (Ginder) Roberts in Noblesville.
Don graduated from Noblesville High School in 1956 and Ball State University in 1960. Thereafter, he entered the United States Navy, where he served on the USS Essex from 1960 to 1962. Upon leaving the Navy, Don began teaching in the Noblesville Schools, where he taught for 25 years. He started an aviation program at Noblesville High School, where he taught students his love of flying by building a Primary Mead Glider, a Chinese Bandit, a Japanese Zero, and a 3/4 scale Douglas SBD Dauntless. Don’s wood projects included a baby cradle, dollhouses, replica World War II tanks, Navy ships and a playhouse for his granddaughter. One of his most important projects to him was the building of the Santa House on the Noblesville courthouse square. Don portrayed Santa Claus each Christmas for 12 years and was in the Christmas Parade for many years, including 2016. The same love he poured into his students, his country and community was reflected in the love Don had for his grandchildren. He was a member of the Navy Club, Experimental Aircraft Association and Noblesville First United Methodist Church. Besides teaching, Don also had a construction company and was co-owner of the Noblesville Airport.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Janet Roberts, son Jeff (Beth) Roberts, daughter Kathy (Dave) Absher, grandchildren Bailey, Hank and Dillon Absher and Grace Roberts, brother Ed Roberts and sister JoAnn Randall.
In addition to his parents, Don was preceded in death by his two brothers, Joe Roberts and Aaron Roberts, Jr., and sister Peggy Bauer.
Memorial contributions may be made to Noblesville First United Methodist Church, 2051 Monument St., Noblesville, IN 46060; or Experimental Aircraft Association, PO Box 6201, Fishers, IN 46038.