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Remembering Don McMillan, Mendota Heights Conservationist

The conservationist and Mendota Heights resident died on April 19 after suffering a heart attack.

The Minnesota conservation movement lost a passionate leader and dedicated activist on April 19 with the passing of Mendota Heights resident Don McMillan.

McMillan, 74, suffered a heart attack on April 17, The Star Tribune reported. He died two days later.

“He was a man of character and integrity,” said McMillan’s son, Mark.

A devoted hunter, fisher and outdoorsman, McMillan served as president of Safari Club International and of the Minnesota Outdoor Heritage Alliance.

Although he was a dentist by trade, McMillan’s great passion was conservation. He was a vocal advocate for the cause at both the state and federal level.

A scholar of the legislative process, McMillan lobbied for the passage of the Legacy Amendment and founded the Safari Club’s political action committee.

But McMillan was not only an activist. He was a mentor.

“He was always that guy that took that extra step to help people,” said Mark.

His son described him as a calm and supportive man, to whom people looked for guidance and advice.

“He was just simply a wonderful person,” said Patricia, McMillan’s wife of 44 years. “He didn’t do anything halfway.”

McMillan, who lived in Mendota Heights for over 20 years, is survived by his wife, three children and five grandchildren.

Services for McMillan were held on April 24 at Assumption Church, in St. Paul.

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