Born in Fort Wayne, Indiana, trumpet player Don Sleet moved with his family to San Diego when he was ten years old. He was originally a pianist until studying trumpet with local teacher Daniel Lewis, going on to play with the San Diego State College Jazz Band and spending three years with the San Diego Symphony.
Sleet first earned notice with Terry Gibbs's big band, but was best known for playing with Howard Rumsey's Lighthouse All-Stars and Lenny McBrowne and the Four Souls. He only released one album as a bandleader, All Members (Jazzland 1961), backed in the studio by Jimmy Heath (tenor saxophone), Wynton Kelly (piano), Ron Carter (double bass), and Jimmy Cobb (drums).
Sleet passed away December 31, 1986, after a three year battle with lymphoma.