Donald Featherstone dead: Creator of pink plastic lawn flamingo dies aged 79

Flamingos became one of the most iconic lawn ornaments in the US

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The Independent Online

Donald Featherstone, a trained sculptor famed for creating the pink plastic lawn flamingo, has died aged 79.

His wife Nancy told the Associated Press her husband passed away in a care facility in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, after suffering from Lewy body disease, a form of dementia.

Featherstone created the pink plastic flamingo in 1957 while working for Union Products, which he based on an image of a flamingo featured in the National Geographic.

The flamingos went on to become one of the most iconic lawn ornaments in the US, selling in their millions.

Featherstone created more than 750 designs for Union Products during his 43 years with the company, where he held the position of president until his retirement in 2000.

He was awarded the parody Ig Nobel Prize for his pink flamingo in 1996. His work was also honoured in the 2011 film Gnomeo & Juliet, where a pink flamingo played by Jim Cummings was named Featherstone, according to the Sentinel Enterprise.

Nancy, who was married to Featherstone for almost 39 years, described her husband as "a class act, [...] just a super-nice man".

"Donald and I had a very strong relationship," she told The Enterprise. "Very good marriage, very strong. I was very lucky to get him."

He is survived by his two children, Judith and Harold, and six grandchildren and great-grandchildren.