Published: July 27, 2016
Don Soderquist, age 82, died on July 21, 2016 due to complications from heart surgery. He was surrounded by his loving wife and children. Don was born on Jan 29, 1934, in Chicago, Illinois, the eldest son of Roy and Edna (Pedersen) Soderquist. He married JoAnn Pollard on June 11, 1955 in Wheaton, Illlinois the week after graduating from Wheaton College with his bachelor's degree. He served in the U.S. Army Finance Corp from 1957-1959. Don's business career at City Products eventually led him to the presidency of Ben Franklin Stores, and then to a long and extraordinary career at Walmart Stores, in Bentonville, Arkansas. He retired from his last post as Chief Operating Officer and Vice Chairman in 2000. He continued to work diligently until the day he passed away — speaking, coaching, advising and impacting people's lives. In 1998 the Soderquist Leadership Center at John Brown University (JBU) in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, was established in his honor as an avenue to continue his work and influence across the world. During his retirement Don authored two books, "The Walmart Way," and "Live Learn Lead." Over the years he was a member of numerous boards of trustees, including a long tenure as the board chair at JBU. He has received awards and recognitions through out his life.
Don is survived by his wife, JoAnn; his four children, 11 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild: son, Mark Soderquist (Jennifer), Dane (Katie), Anders; daughter, Wendy Togami (Kai), Zac Koons (Anna), Christian Koons (Anna), Kinsley Koons; daughter Sandie Ford (Rollin), Jessica Salmon (Brian), Riley, Paige Brown (Thomas), Audrey ;and son Jeff Soderquist (Amy) Kacey, Breck; and his sister, Jean Halleen.
A memorial service will be held in his honor on at 10 a.m., Friday, July 29, 2016 at Fellowship Bible NWA at 1051 West Pleasant Grove Road, Rogers, Arkansas. In lieu of flowers contributions can be made to the following organizations: www.lgyc.org, www.newliferanch.com, www.westlawnyouthnetwork.org.
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