The Archives of Falconry Legacy Circle, Susan Bowman, friends and family of Don
Heidt, The North American Falconers Association
Donald William Heidt was born on February 9, 1938 in Davenport, Iowa to
Willard Leslie and Gladys Bond Heidt. After a long illness, Don passed away
on February 24, 2015.
Don was active in Boy Scouting in Arlington, TX, receiving the Explorer
Silver Award. One of his favorite Boy Scout experiences was attending Junior
Leader Training at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico. Wildlife and the
outdoors were a big part of Dons life.
Don completed his application for the Bird Study Merit Badge in 1955 and
thereafter birds became a special interest. In the 1970’s he found a sponsor,
David Williamson, and his passion became falconry. Don spent many hours
tromping in the woods with his hawks. His first birds were Red-tailed Hawks
and later he had Harriss Hawks that he trapped in South Texas.
Don joined the Naval Reserves and served 7 years at the U.S. Naval Air
Station Dallas, TX, traveling the world in his job as radio operator for his squadron. While in the reserves,
he completed courses in aviation electronics. Don went on to graduate from Arlington State College
(which would become UT
Arlington) in 1966 with a
BS in Electrical Engineering.
Don was hired by Texas
Instruments (TI) where he
had the great fortune of
working in Jack St. Clair
Kilby’s laboratory. Kilby
would go on to win the
Nobel Prize in physics in
2000 for inventing the first
integrated circuit. Don met
Susan Bowman while both
were working at TI in the
early 1980’s. They fell in
love and married in 1986 in
Monument, CO.
Throughout his 43 year career Don was known for
his technical expertise and innovative ideas. His
straightforward communication style was legendary.
While at TI Don became an Engineering Manager and
Senior Member of the Technical Staff, co-authoring
two patents related to manufacturing equipment and
process technology. After leaving TI, Don become a
founding partner of two other businesses. During this
time, two more patents were co-authored. A modest
man of marvelous intellect, Don freely shared his
knowledge with others but rarely talked about his own
An avid bibliophile, Don was always on the lookout
for falconry and archaeology books in used book
stores. One day he ran across an interesting-looking,
old, leather-bound volume with many added original
photographs and hand painted lithographs. It was
Falconry in the British Isles. Don spent many years
researching the provenance of this book and finally
concluded it had belonged to Francis Henry Salvin, one
of the authors. The book was donated in 2008 to the
Archives of Falconry to be enjoyed by many.
After many trips to Colorado over the years, Don and Susan retired, moving to Colorado Springs in 2002.
Always the avid book collector and researcher, in retirement Don began studying archaeoastronomy,
spending time with his friend and sponsor David Williamson at a remote petroglyph site in the panhandle of
Oklahoma. His research was presented at a symposium in 2009 and he continued to study and be fascinated
by this ancient calendar. Don was a kind and generous man who was deeply loved and is greatly missed by
family and friends.
in memory of Donald Heidt
Don Heidt with petroglyphs
Don with his three children
Don Heidt with siblings Janet Roberts,
Jean Carter, Dick Heidt
Don Heidt with Susans family
During his lifetime, Don was an engineer, wildlife enthusiast, husband and father. He was a
kind and generous man who was deeply loved and is greatly missed by family and friends.
Don with Harris