William Donald Obituary, Death – Papa Don, William Donald “Don” Norris, 84, died on November 29, 2022. Son of Col. Ray L. Norris and Reba Cox Norris, he was born in Tabor City, NC, on September 12, 1938. Troy, Wendell, Sue, Bob, and Yvonne predeceased Don. He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Marilyn; sons Brian and Dondi; brother Lavern (Gail); sister-in-law Deloris; daughter-in-law Bridget; grandchildren Mercedes, Ryan (Madison), Caylin, Aly & Nicole; great grand-twins Isla and Luka; and a niece who was like a daughter, Crystal. Jamie (Kari, Patrick, Bailey), Buddy (Gale), & Reba
Don’s ancestors farmed tobacco. He quickly learned what a loving, hard-working, humble Christian family meant. He knew to do the right thing because 3 uncles were Wesleyan Methodist preachers. He learned tobacco farming and mule plowing. He hoped for more. He left Tabor City after his mother died in 1958 but never forgot his roots. Don attended Barber College in Columbia. 1960: He opened Parklane Barbershop in Cayce, SC. In 1961, he received a draft notice and joined the U.S. Army. He was in Germany’s 19th infantry, 2nd battle group, 24th division during the Berlin Crisis. Don was wounded in combat training after 2 years of active duty. He returned to Womack Hospital in Fayetteville, NC, and then to Fort Bragg. After that, he served in the 321st Reserve Unit at Fort Jackson. He served months past ETS. 1964: Don and his brother open Norris Brothers Barber Shop. In 1970, he opened The Rogue at Dutch Square, which served Columbia residents for 45 years. The State Newspaper’s Best Hair Salon for several years was the salon. His clients became like family then. His friendships with clients spanned generations. Don was gregarious and known for his jokes and stories. He loved scaring his sons, nieces, and nephews with old myths and legends. He was known for his wit and humor.
Don took on the daunting task of improving the barbering profession when he realized many laws and licensing regulations were needed. With his knowledge, he was elected President of the SC Barber Association. Gov. Riley named him “Barber of the Year” in 1987. In the following year, he was appointed to the SC Barber Board, where he served 4 terms and 2 as chairman. He was instrumental in passing barbering legislation at the time. In a letter to Governor Riley, Senator Joel Lourie described Don as “knowledgeable” Don served on the SC Labor, Licensing and Regulation Oversight Committee until his health declined. Served two terms on the West Columbia Planning Commission for planning and zoning. In addition, he served on the advisory board for Roffler Industries in New York City, where he helped rewrite the National Testing Examinations for the entire country. Also, he joined Our Saviour Lutheran Church in 1966.
Busy Don always looked forward to long weekends at his lake house. He was an avid fisherman who loved sitting on the porch and watching the sunset. Along with his wisdom, he put family first. His childhood shaped him into a man. Family, humility, strength, and respect for others grounded him. His family is thankful for his care. Special thanks to Dr. Korrapati, Oncologist, Paige Tomlinson, Lexington Oncology Infusion nurse, and Amedisys Hospice: Deborah Cook, R.N., Jerrie Fanning, R.N., Michelle Floyd, Registered Respiratory Therapist, and Jacob Shaw, Nurse Practitioner.
Saturday, December 3, 2022 at Noon at Our Saviour Lutheran Church in West Columbia. Visitation is 1 hour before the service. Following the service, Southland Memorial Gardens will be used. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Our Saviour Lutheran Church in West Columbia, SC. The family is being helped by Barr-Price Lexington Chapel.