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Donald Ray Hebert, 43, was found dead in his 3115 SW McKinley Avenue home in Des Moines on Tuesday, September 9, 1980, after failing to show up for his job with United Airlines at the Des Moines Airport. According to Des Moines police, Hebert died from a single gunshot wound to the head.
A Des Moines Register article dated Sept. 10, 1980, said Hebert worked the 1 to 10 p.m. shift the previous day, and afterward had gone to a southside tavern to watch the last half of the Monday night football game.
Hebert — who was divorced and lived alone — would often stop by the tavern after work, but patrons told the Register’s Tom Suk that Herbert left the night before with an unknown man.
When Hebert failed to show up for work on Tuesday, a co-worker contacted Hebert’s girlfriend, Kim Gray, who had a key to Hebert’s home. Inside, they found Hebert on the bathroom floor. He’d been shot once just above his left eye.
Des Moines police recovered a spent cartridge in the bathroom sink as well as a live round near the body, but found no weapon at the scene.
The home showed no signs of forced entry, though the Register reported some household items had been disturbed, indicating the shooter had been searching for something. Hebert usually carried a few hundred dollars in his wallet; police found the empty billfold on Hebert’s bedroom dresser.
Donald R. Hebert was born March 30, 1937, to Raymond L. and Juanita R. Hebert.
He was survived by one adult daughter.
His murder remains unsolved.
If you have any information about Donald Hebert’s unsolved murder please contact the Des Moines Police Department at 515-283-4864.