Donald Hebert

Donald Hebert

Donald Ray Hebert


Donald Ray Hebert
43 YOA
3115 SW McKinley Avenue
Des Moines, IA
Polk County
Case # 1980-38313
September 8, 1980

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.

Polk County in Iowa
Polk County in Iowa
Des Moines in Polk CountyDes Moines in Polk County

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.

About Donald Hebert

Donald R. Hebert was born March 30, 1937, to Raymond L. and Juanita R. Hebert.

He was survived by three daughters.

His murder remains unsolved.

Information Needed

If you have any information about Donald Hebert’s unsolved murder please contact the Des Moines Police Department at 515-283-4864.

  • Des Moines Police Department, correspondence to Iowa Cold Cases, July 10, 2009
  • “D.M. man found shot to death,” by Tom Suk, The Des Moines Register, September 10, 1980
  • Donald Hebert (1937 – 1980) — Find a Grave Memorial
  • Person Details for Donald Hebert, “United States Social Security Death Index” —
  • United States Census, 1940, Donald R. Hebert in household of Raymond L. Hebert —


6 Responses to Donald Hebert

  1. Shannon Hebert says:

    The above article states he was survived by one daughter? He has 3. No evidence to prosecute? Fragments of my father’s skull were found in James Burroughs boot!!! They had plenty of other proof to use to prosecute. I think there is a lot more to his murder.

    • LakeLife says:

      I’m so sorry for your loss!
      It sounds like his murderer has died now.
      God will judge that evil man!

  2. Patrick Kerrigan says:

    It would be interesting to know if the spent cartridge and live cartridge were entered into the ballistics computer system. It might be a long shot to see if the weapon had been used in any ther crimes.

    Also, he had an established pattern of stopping by the bar after work. It appears he was known to carry large sums of money. So, he became a target for a bad guy. But, the person would have become some sort of regular at the bar, for the victim to leave with him.

    • Bettina Hebert says:

      This was my father. It was my understanding he only knew the murders for about three weeks. He played pool with them. These killers had murdered others in Des Moines as well. People who came from good famlies and were well respected in the community. One of the killers James Burroughs has died of cancer. The police told us initially they could not get enough evidence to prosecute.

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