Don Dunavan, 67, of Danville, passed away on Friday, Feb. 7, 2014.
He was born Nov. 22, 1946, in Danville, the son of Ralph and Ellen Story Dunavan.
He is survived by his brother, Dan (Katy) Dunavan; his sister, Mary Jo (Marvin) McDonald; his daughters, Desire (Chad) Wear, and Tamara (Chris) Gudauskas; his grandchildren, Marshall and Donavan Gudauskas; and a special friend, Joellyn Krauel.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his beloved wife, Sondra.
Don worked at Hyster as a tool and die maker for more than 30 years. He also was a part of the Union Executive Committee for 18 years; he served as the president of the committee for five years.
Don was the late model track champion at the Vermilion County Speedway. He also was a strong supporter of concealed carry in Illinois. Don was a 42-year Masonic Lodge member, as well as a member of Scottish Rite since 1976.
Don was an Illini and Chicago bears fan; he also was a member of “the chain gang” with Bismarck High School for 38 years and never missed a game. He was an avid sprint car fan and enjoyed spending winters in Eustis, Fla., for speed week and above all else, Bike Week. Don loved the freedom he got from riding on his Harley, going to motorcycle events and H.O.G. rallies. He also enjoyed traveling to different flea markets in Florida. Don was a helper. He loved helping his fellow man with mowing and plowing snow. He would help fight for the underdog with his union activities. He became a Christian when he was baptized at Old Union Church, and he was a longtime member of Crossroads Christian Church.
Don loved to ski; this was a trait he passed to his daughter Desire. He also enjoyed golfing with friends and family, deer hunting, country dancing and rodeos.
Don was the Democrat county chairman from 2002-2010. He also served as the vice president of the presidential committee during President Obama’s presidential race. Don lived on the north side of Danville for 34 years until the day he built his dream log home in 2011; three sides of it being surrounded by the Middlefork Conservation District.
Above all else, Don loved his family and he will be sorely missed by anyone who was fortunate enough to have known him. Special thanks are to be given to the nurses in Dr. Labayog’s office, especially Pam, Pricilla and Tracy. They are the greatest. Thanks to Pro PT for exceptional care of Nadine and Ronnie Day; and thanks to the nurses of 4-West at Presence in Danville.
A celebration of Don’s life will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday Feb. 13, at Crossroads Christian Church in Danville. A visitation will be held 3-9 p.m. Wednesday Feb. 12, at Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center, A Life Celebration Home, in Danville. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Don’s name to the Danville Presence Cancer Center, or to the donor’s choice of any of the organizations that Don was a part of. Please join the Dunavan family in sharing memories, pictures and videos of Don’s life on his tribute wall at www.sunsetfuneralhome.com.