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Donald Hoffman Shank
(06-20-1923 - 06-18-2018)

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 A memorial service for Reverend Donald Hoffman Shank, 94, of St. Charles who died on Monday, June 18, 2018 will be held at 10:00 a.m. Saturday, July 21st at the Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren in Elgin. A reception will be held following the service.

Don was born at home in Cearfoss, Maryland on June 20, 1923, the oldest child of Samuel L. Shank and Ruth E. Shank. He grew up in Waynesboro, Pennsylvania and graduated from Waynesboro High School in 1941. From 1943 to 1946 he served in the United States Marine Corps. Following his discharge from military service, Don enrolled at Shippensburg State University where he majored in accounting and retail sales. For two years while in college he was a business partner in a local soft drink company. He responded to God’s call to Christian ministry and graduated from Bethany Theological Seminary in 1953.

Don served as the founding pastor of the Drexel Hill Church of the Brethren in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, from 1953 to 1961. In the summer of 1961 he was called to be the pastor of the Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren in Elgin, Illinois, where he served for fourteen years. In January, 1976 Don became the founding pastor of Christ the Servant Church of the Brethren in Cape Coral, Florida. Following his twenty-year pastorate in Cape Coral, Don was called to be the interim pastor and began a second term at Highland Avenue Church in April, 1996.

During Don’s nearly fifty years of pastoral ministry he was heavily involved in the communities of which he was a part and served on the boards of several social service agencies, including the founding board of what is now Senior Services Associates. Two high points in his ministry at Highland Avenue were his participation in the march on Washington for civil rights in 1963, and the march in Selma, Alabama in 1965 with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In 2002 he received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award from the City of Elgin in honor of his involvement in the civil rights movement both locally and nationally. From March, 2002 to April, 2018, Pastor Don served as Oncology Chaplain at Presence St. Joseph Hospital’s Cancer Care Center. Don found life’s fulfillment in service to his Lord Jesus Christ, his family, and the congregations and communities in which he served, lived, and loved.

Don was the loving husband of Eileen S. Shank to whom he was married for sixty-seven years. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Karl, his wife, Eileen, and his son, Timothy. He is survived by his sister, Julia Dawson of Verona, New Jersey, two children, Donna (John) Lengle of St. Charles, Sam (Mary) Shank of Arlington, Texas, seven grandchildren, Meghan (Travis) Brock, Amy (Eric) Larson, Philip (Lisa) Lengle, Diana (David) Martinez, Tara (Jerry) Pommer, Sam (Alex) Shank, and Courtney Shank, and ten great-grandchildren, Brody, Camden and Skylar, Brock, Brennen and Colby Larson, John and Joseph Lengle, Grace and Annabelle Martinez, and Zoe Pommer.

Memorial gifts may be given to the Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren, Meadows Regional Cancer Care Center at Presence Saint Joseph Hospital, and Carriage Oaks, a senior independent living facility in St. Charles.
Arrangements by Laird Funeral Home. For information, please call 847-741-8800 or www.lairdfamilyfuneralservices.com 

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