Benefactor Donald Sherwood

WALLA WALLA - Donald Sherwood, a Walla Walla businessman and benefactor of Whitman College, has died of a heart attack. He was 92.

Mr. Sherwood, who had been in poor health for several months, died Monday.

Mr. Sherwood was a 1922 graduate of Whitman College and began his career working for Standard Oil of California. During the Depression, he decided to go into business.

In 1932, he formed Sherwood & Roberts with Yakima businessman Austin Roberts. The company grew over the years into a full-service real-estate and finance firm that operated in nine Western states.

Mr. Sherwood sold the company in 1971, bought and sold other businesses, and got into land development.

He bought American Sign and Indicator Corp. of Spokane, maker of the time-and-temperature signs outside thousands of banks and scoreboard signs at major sporting venues.

Mr. Sherwood is credited with helping save Whitman College, his alma mater, from bankruptcy during the Depression. Over the years, he gave almost $10 million to the school. Students at the campus radio station used to jokingly call him Don "Sure-good."

His wife, Virginia, died in January.