DONALD CLARENCE KATSMA, born October 31, 1964 Waupun Memorial Hospital, Waupun, Dodge County, Wisconsin; died July 28, 2000 in Waupun Memorial Hospital, Waupun, Dodge County, Wisconsin.  "an Motorcyle accident on Highway 68, Dodge County, Wisconsin."
He married
VICKI JEAN PLUIM, on Private. She was born Private.

Children of


CODY LEE KATSMA, born Private

Notes for Donald Clarence Katsma :
The Neighbors-August 5, 2000:
RANDOLPH - Donald C. Katsma, 35, of N8297 E. Friesland Road, Randolph, died Friday, July 28, 2000, at Waupun Memorial Hospital following a motorcycle accident.
The funeral was held on Monday, July 31, at 11 a.m., at the First Randolph Christian Reformed Church, of East Friesland. The Rev. Robert Brenton officiated. Burial was in Friesland Cemetery.
Mr. Katsma was born on Oct. 31, 1964, in Waupun, the son of Dewey and Vernette (Dykstra) Katsma. He was married to Vicki Pluim, on April 23, 1988, Immanuel Reformed Church, Waupun.
Mr. Katsma was an area resident all of his life. He was a 1983 graduate of Cambria-Friesland High School, and a member of First Randolph Christian Reformed Church of East Friesland and served on the church council. He was employed with National Rivet, Waupun, as an electro-plater for seven years. Most of all, Don was a wonderful husband, a great father to his children and he had a great love of the outdoors.
Survivors include his wife of 12 years, Vicki; three children, Kyle, Cody and Tiffany Katsma, all at home; his parents, Dewey and Vernette Katsma, Friesland; maternal grandmother, Tena Dysktra, Randolph; sisters and brothers, Sharry (Rick) Stiemsma, Randolph, Dave (Mary) Katsma, Cambria, Karen (George) Aalsma, Waupun, Doug (Peggy) Katsma, Alto, Dan (Kathy) Katsma, Randolph; father-in-law and mother-in-law Melvin and Janice Pluim, Waupun; four brother-in-law, Steve (Delaine) Pluim, Mark (Valeen) Pluim, Rick (Shelly) Pluim, and Ryan (Briget) Pluim, all of Waupun; his wife's grandfather, Walter Pluim, Waupun; aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his maternal grandfather, William Dykstra, and paternal grandparents, Sam and Mary Katsma.
Friends called on Sunday, July 30, from 5 to 8 p.m., at the Randolph Community Funeral Home, and on Monday, July 31, from 10 a.m. until the time of service, at the First Randolph Christian Reformed Church of East Friesland.
A memorial is being established for his children's education.
The Randolph Community Funeral Home, Randolph, served the family.

Ford sentenced to six years, three months


By AARON HOLBROOK - Managing Editor  August 18, 2001

JUNEAU - Chad Ford, 30, Waupun, will serve six years and three months in prison for killing Donald C. Katsma in a drunken driving accident on July 28, 2000.

Ford was sentenced in Dodge County Circuit Court Friday afternoon after hours of tearful testimony by friends and relatives of both Katsma and Ford. The one thing that those who spoke agreed upon is that drunken driving must be stopped.

"Drinking alcohol and driving has got to cease," said Katsma's father-in-law, Melvin Pluim, who was among Katsma's relatives arguing for a stiff sentence.

Katsma died when a truck driven by Ford struck the motorcycle he was riding on Highway 68 around midnight last July. Ford left the scene and did not turn himself in to police until shortly before 4 a.m. Ford's blood alcohol level was .14 when measured around 5 a.m.

As a result, Ford was convicted of homicide by intoxicated use of a motor vehicle and hit and run.

Prior to announcing the sentencing, Judge John Storck explained truth in sentencing laws and his rationale behind his sentencing. The defense had recommended a sentence that did not include prison time and District Attorney Pat Ramirez had recommended a 10-year prison sentence. Defense attorney Brian Pftizinger argued that Ford was remorseful and could do more to repay his debt outside of prison than incarcerated. Ramirez pointed out that Ford had a history of drunken driving convictions and had treatment for alcohol problems more than once.

"I'm confident that I probably have pleased no one today," Storck said of the sentence he handed down.

Ford was sentenced to 75 months in prison and 18 years and 9 months of extended supervision on the homicide charge. He was ordered to maintain absolute sobriety, pay restitution of $9,821, undergo AODA counseling and have no contact with the Katsma family. His driver's license was revoked for five years. For the hit and run charge, Ford was sentenced to five years in prison concurrent to his other sentence and two and one-half years on extended supervision also concurrent.

In addition, Ford was ordered to perform 1,000 hours of community service to include assisting with the establishment of a victim impact panel. Such a panel would be used to inform offenders and the public about the impact their crimes have.

Close to four hours of testimony Friday, made the impact of drunken driving painfully evident.

"Don's first priority in life was his family," said Katsma's wife, Vicki. "You cannot imagine how much Kyle, Cody and Tiffany miss him. The worst day of my life was the day I had to tell Kyle, Cody and Tiffany that their dad at the age of 35 was dead as the result of a motor cycle accident - killed by a drunk driver."

Vicki Katsma then held up photos of her children and told Ford what the children missed about their father. She passed a stack of photos from family activities to Storck and to Ford, who looked through them and then wiped tears from his eyes.

"My best friend's gone," Vicki Katsma said. "When Chad Ford took Don's life, he took mine."

Vicki Katsma also commented on the cruelty of hitting her husband and then fleeing the scene. It was a fact of the case Storck noted during his sentencing comments.

"I think everyone in this room will be haunted by the question of what would have happened if you had stopped?" Storck said.

In addition to the nine people who spoke on behalf of the Katsma family, there were 11 people who spoke on Ford's behalf, asking Storck to carefully consider the impact a prison sentence would have on his family. All of them expressed their sorrow and sympathy for the Katsma family.

"I'll be the first to admit that what Chad did was wrong," said his wife Christina Ford. "If only I had put a stop to it all and nagged until I couldn't nag."

"He has not only caused great pain to your family," Christina Ford said of the Katsmas, "but also to ours. I'm so sorry for all of this pain."

Ford echoed the apology in his statement prior to sentencing.

"Saying I'm sorry today can in no way make up for what I've done to you," Ford said reading from a statement, while seated facing the Katsma family. "If there was any way I could trade places with Donald Katsma, I would do it in a second."

Ford said he cannot repay his debt to the family of Donald Katsma or to the community, but said he would like to try by educating the public about the dangers of drunken driving.

Ford said guilt and remorse from the accident has tormented him since the day of the crash.

"While this court can lock me up for many years," Ford said, "it cannot punish me more than I am punishing myself."