Melvin “Pack Rat” Leroy Williamson

Posted 9/13/23

Melvin “Pack Rat” Leroy Williamson, 72, Doland, SD, passed away peacefully after a long battle with cancer on Friday, September 8, 2023, at Community Memorial Hospital Avera in Redfield.

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Melvin “Pack Rat” Leroy Williamson


   Melvin “Pack Rat” Leroy Williamson, 72, Doland, SD, passed away peacefully after a long battle with cancer on Friday, September 8, 2023, at Community Memorial Hospital Avera in Redfield. 

   Visitation will be from 5pm to 7pm on Friday, September 15, at Hyke Funeral Home in Redfield.  Family will be present to accept condolences.  A prayer service and time of sharing will follow at 7pm.

His funeral service will be at 10:30am on Saturday, September 16, at the Doland School Gymnasium in Doland.  Pastor Melissa Rowenhorst will officiate.  Burial will follow at the Doland Cemetery with military honors.  A luncheon will follow at the Doland School Gymnasium.

   The funeral service will be live-streamed to the funeral home's website below Melvin's obituary.  Arrangements have been entrusted to Hyke Funeral Home (

   Melvin Leroy Williamson was born January 16, 1951, in Redfield to Charles “Charlie” and Delores (Ragels) Williamson.  He spent his childhood on the farm south of Doland before moving to Doland.  He attended a rural country school before attending and graduating from Doland High School. 

   Melvin was drafted into the United States Marine Corps, where he proudly served until 1974.  He never met a Veteran without thanking them for their service.  On March 7, 1970, he married his “Pretty Woman”, Lynette Bruns, in Doland, SD.  To this union, two children were born, Jody Williamson and Jamie Williamson.  After returning from the service, Melvin joined his father as the third generation of Williamson Trucking (since 1946), working up until the time of his death.  He was proud of his son Jamie when he followed in his footsteps and became the fourth generation.  His motto was, “You Call, We Haul, You Pay, That’s All!”  As the most generous man we knew, he would give the shirt off his back if he could.

   Family was everything to Melvin as he patiently waited for the birth of his first great-granddaughter who was born just hours after his death.  He loved vintique cars, traveling, and was a loyal fan of the Minnesota Twins and Vikings.  He especially loved going to the races and watching his nephew Chad “Captain Insano” Williamson race.  He enjoyed demolition derbies and playing softball in his younger days, something he passed on to his son Jamie.  If he wasn’t in his truck, you could find him watching old westerns, playing cards, or having coffee with friends.

   Melvin was a member of the Doland Methodist Church and Doland American Legion.

   Melvin is survived by the love of his life, Lynette Williamson, Doland; daughter Jody Williamson, Watertown, SD; son Jamie (Jessica Sheridan) Williamson, Doland; granddaughters: McKayla Williamson, Redfield, McKenzie (Brysen Seaman) Williamson and their children Channing and Cheznie, Redfield, and Shaylee Morris of Watertown; and grandson Briggs Williamson, Doland.   He is also survived by his sisters-in-law: Karen (David) Hink and Sandy Murphy, both of Clark, SD; as well as brother-in-law Billy (Sandy) Bruns, Renner; and many nieces and nephews.

   He is preceded in death by his parents, sister Connie Burgher Farris, brothers Ronnie and Bruce Williamson, parents-in-law Bill and Vivian Bruns, brother-in-law Don Murphy, and step grandson Triten Heber.

   No more “Just one more load” dad.  We got this!