Donald Paul Durbin

June 02, 1954 ‒ May 20, 2017

Lebanon, Illinois
Formerly of Dayton, Ohio

LEXINGTON:  One thing that bound Don Durbin to his large family of brothers and sisters was their sense of humor – well, and their storytelling ability – well, and their love of getting together.

Described as a fun-loving man with a kind, kind heart, Don Durbin went to be with the Lord Saturday morning May 20, 2017 from Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, MO. He was 62.

Born Donald Paul Durbin in Mount Vernon to Walter E. and Barbara L. (Thorp) Durbin, he was graduated from Lexington High School in 1972 and played on the varsity basketball team that went to the OHSAA finals. After graduation, he joined the U.S. Air Force and earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from The Ohio State University in 1977 (and never lost his love for the Buckeyes!).  He earned his MBA from Chaminade University of Honolulu in 1987.

Don retired from the U.S. Air Force with 24 years of service as Lieutenant Colonel in 1996 and worked thereafter as a government contractor in program management.

He loved his kids, his community, and enjoyed fellowship with Christian friends. As a member of First Baptist Church of O’Fallon, Illinois, he felt his place was in serving the Lord – in any capacity he could.

He is survived by his wife Vanessa L. (Meo) Bryant, whom he married April 24, 2003; children Regan Durbin and Paula Durbin both of Fairborn, Steven Durbin of Youngstown, Brandon Durbin of San Francisco, CA, Kelsey Durbin of St. Louis, MO and Veronica Bryant of Lebanon, IL; a granddaughter Madisyn Durbin; siblings Rod (Sue) Durbin of Lexington, Brian “Yogi” & Joy Durbin of Lewis Center, Teresa Durbin of Mansfield, Steve & Valerie Durbin of Lexington, Michael “Pius” & Sally Durbin of Mansfield, Patty & Brian Wade of Bellville and Marty & Mary Durbin of Mansfield; numerous nieces and nephews; and dear friends in Ohio and Illinois.

He was preceded in death by his parents, and a sister Diana Lynn “Dee” Durbin.

The Durbin Family will receive friends Wednesday, May 24, 2017 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Lexington Avenue Snyder Funeral Home, where his funeral service will immediately follow at 1 p.m. His brother Pastor Yogi Durbin and nephew Chris Durbin will speak. Military honors by American Legion Post #535 will follow. Burial will be in Woodland Cemetery, Dayton, on Thursday.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory can be made to First Baptist Church of O’Fallon (IL) or Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and may be made at the funeral home.

Snyder Funeral Home is honored to serve the Durbin family. Send them a note of support – or watch Don’s tribute video – online at:

  • Sending my deepest sympathies to the entire Durbin family for the untimely loss of Don. I will always remember his infectious smile that he gave to nearly everyone that he encountered without hesitation. May you all take comfort knowing his suffering is over now and his valiant fight has been inspirational to many. I hope your grief will be short-lived and will be replaced with wonderful warm memories that will bring comfort to you all.

  • I would like to share my deepest condolences to all the Durbin family. My prayers are with all of you. I grew up with Don and the rest of the Durbin gang in Lexington and remember him well. We used to play either football, basketball or baseball most every day. In high school, he was good friend and a great 6th man off the bench on that amazing 1972 state runner up basketball team. I great loss to all of us and especially his family. May God bring you comfort during your time of grief. Don’s with the Lord, no more suffering.

  • One never forgets that special person in life even if your meeting with them is for only a few fleeting moments. I remember Don from high school and didn’t know him well but adored him. He always had that glowing spirit that made everyone smile. May God wrap His great, loving arms around Don’s family and loved ones. Thinking of you with great sympathy.

    Class of 1971

  • My heartfelt sympathy for your loss of this wonderfully kind, warm, and generous husband, father, and friend. I wish you peace as you remember all the great stories and laughter he brought to the table with each meeting. His smile will truly be missed and he will be remembered with warmth and love.

  • Dearest Rod and Sue and the Durbin family,

    I grew up with the Durbin kids in Lexington, Ohio. We played baseball in the field behind our home on Plymouth Street. I’m so saddened to learn of his passing but know he is with family & the Lord our Savior.

    We are currently out of state but know my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

    Love you,
    Barb Whitney Earles

  • I have great memories of growing up in Lexington and Don is a big part of those memories. From Little League All Stars through playing with Don on LHS baseball and basketball teams. He was always positive and had the knack of making people laugh even when we didn’t feel like it. His heart was huge and we were better for being around him. Prayers for his family during this time of mourning.

  • Our thoughts and prayers for Vanessa and their children. We have such fond memories of Don and Vanessa from our time together at Wright Patterson and Scott Air Force Bases. Our deepest sympathy.

  • Don was a dear brother in Christ. I remember clearly when I served with the Men’s Ministries of First Baptist O’Fallon. Don had just joined the church and was already asking how he could serve the congregation. After learning that he was handy in home repair and maintenance, we put him to work on the houses of a few ladies/widows. He and I assessed houses and made repairs together, and I was so blessed by those times of brotherly fellowship. When he was hospitalized for the first time, I went to see him. The first thing he told me was, “Sam, I don’t know. This doesn’t look good. I may not be able to serve in a while.” Here was Don fighting leukemia and he was still thinking about others. That’s the brother Don, I will always remember. I do know I will see him again, and I look forward to glorifying the Lord together with Don, again.

  • My heartfelt thoughts, and prayers to the entire Durbin Family. I am praying that the Lord will give you peace and comfort during this season of your lives. Praying for each of you individually that you would feel the presence of Jesus wrap His loving arms around you all.

  • Vanessa, my thoughts and prayers were with you and family all week-end. May God see you thru this sad time. Love to you Bob Folen

  • “A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity.” Durb was a gem in my life from the first acquaintance till now. He was always out ahead of me quickly understanding things yet defiant and courageous. He was the controversial in “colorful and controversial.” He had no concept of backing down. He always saw opportunity when most saw danger. What a classmate, teammate and friend! What a great day it was when he told me he had submitted his life to Christ! A good man made better. I will see you again Durb, but not yet.

  • Vanessa and family: My deepest sympathies for your loss. May God give you the strength you need during these days ahead.
    With Love,
    Virginia Thompson and family

  • Though I never knew Don, I have had the pleasure to know a couple of his children. Through knowing them, I do know he was a wonderful man to have such wonderful kids. My heart is filled with so much love for you all as you travel this grief filled path. My prayers are with you. May God hold you in his arms to give you comfort.

  • I had the joy of caring for Don as his nurse. I received so much encouragement from him and shared in many laughs. He was always kind, even if he was upset about something. I am at peace that he is resting in Heaven now, and pray for peace for all his family and friends that will miss him so dearly.

  • Oh my dear Vanessa. I am so very sorry for your loss. I cannot imagine the loss of a husband. Know you have many who love you.
    Helen (Abernethy) & Tom Neale

  • Vanessa,

    We are heartbroken for you and your family over the passing of Don. Always remember his warm smile and his love of his family. Thinking of you and praying for your strength during this difficult time.

    We love you. Stephanie and George Burd (and TC, Jenny, Kyle, Matt, Katelyn, and Beth)

  • I was saddened to hear of Don’s passing. My heartfelt sympathies and prayers go out to his wife, children, family and friends. God Bless you all.

  • So, very sorry to hear of your loss, our family will be praying for you all…what an amazing man and many memories of your whole family as we grew together at Lexington School. Blessings

  • Vanessa
    Our deepest thoughts and prayers to you and your family. My the Lord lift you and guide you through this difficult loss. Love Lori, Richard & Brayden

  • “Family ties become more treasured, more appreciated through life’s changing seasons.” We will always remember Don’s clever wit and his love for his family. Our sincere condolences and love to the entire Durbin family.

    Kathy Geib Ward and Jamey Durbin Family

  • What a great guy… What great memories.. Smile Wit Charm Don will live forever in his family and friends.

  • My sincere condolences to the Durbin family. I knew Don from school & basketball at Lexington. A very fine & personable individual. May God comfort & strengthen you all at this sad time.

  • Brandon and the Durbin Family:

    Sending you nothing by love and light today and praying you find strength and courage during this time to allow the memories and good moments you had with your father carry you through the hard moments. We are so incredibly sorry for your loss – what an amazing man your father is.

    Josh and Emily Czerniejewski

  • What a beautiful video tribute to Don! His warmth and love for his family shines through in every photo.

    My heart goes out to the entire Durbin family in this deep loss. May God comfort you in his loving arms.

    Ronny Wright Douglass