by Steve Waller, former missionary to Indonesia, Florence, Ala.

MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. (BNc)- Donald R. (Don) Waggoner who did much pioneer work as a gospel preacher andmissionary in Indonesia passed away Sunday afternoon, Nov. 2, in a local hospital.

Missionary Don WaggonerHe had been plagued by numerous health problems for some time. He was 74.

My wife and I visited with him in a rehabilitation center just over a week ago when he was still able to speak and discuss the Lord’s work in Indonesia. His condition quickly deteriorated shortly after that.

Don is loved by so many people in America, Indonesia, Venezuela and Romania where he and his wonderful wife Judy, did so much good for the cause of Christ.

Don grew up in middle Tennessee, played high school football and graduated from Vanderbilt University with a degree in Chemical Engineering.

He worked in secular work most of his life, but in the 1960s he decided that he wanted to become a gospel preacher. He was, for the most part, a self-taught preacher.

He was a powerful man in the pulpit and sound in the faith.

He asked to be transferred to Indonesia by the company for which he worked, so that he could earn his living in secular work and do missionary work in a nation that needed, and still needs, faithful missionaries (Indonesia is the fourth largest nation in the world and the largest Muslim nation in the world with 88 percent of the population being Muslim).

Don built fertilizer factories in Indonesia for a large corporation, PT. Pusri, and preached the gospel. He taught many young Indonesian men the gospel and baptized them.

His wife Judy taught the new converts the English language. When they had learned enough English, Don sent the young new converts to Four Seas Bible College in Singapore, where English is required for schooling, for formal training. Most of this was done at Don’s own expense. The young men returned to Indonesia where most of them are still faithful gospel preachers unto this day.

Don helped establish several congregations in Indonesia. He also established what is now known as the Southern Sumatra Bible College on the island of Sumatra.

Later, Don and Judy worked in Venezuela and Romania, serving the Lord as missionaries while supporting themselves for the most part through his secular work. Don returned to the U.S. and preached in the Florence, Ala., area and in Colbert County.

He was a big man physically with an even bigger heart filled with love for Christ, his fellowman, and souls. He will be missed by all who knew him.