Donald E. Nepstad

Donald E. Nepstad
Donald E. Nepstad

Donald Erling Nepstad passed on “to his next great adventure” on March 6, 2017. Born in Chicago on October 1, 1928, he lived his early years in the North Shore area of the city. Obtaining an education was an early, lasting interest and goal. He received undergraduate degrees from Bethel and Monmouth colleges in Minnesota and Illinois. He obtained graduate degrees from Northern Baptist Seminary in Chicago and the University of Texas. Don became an ordained minister with two denominations; first with the American Baptist Church and then, for over fifty years, with the Presbyterian Church U.S.A.

Within him resided a passion for social justice issues, especially pertaining to racial inequality and a desire for inclusiveness in church and society. Two highlights of ministry were coalition efforts in Chicago in the mid-sixties supporting and marching with Martin Luther King in pursuit of Civil Rights and then in the 1970s providing resources and homes for dislocated Vietnamese refugees. He served mid-western churches, primarily in Illinois and Michigan. Don also provided professional counseling service through the Samaritan Center organization and taught psychology at Southwestern Michigan College.

A devoted Chicago Cubs fan for over seventy years, Don lived to see his Cubs win the World Series. He also enjoyed football and played golf as recently as fall of 2016. His family and friends are grateful for his energetic approach to life and deeply grateful for the inspiring message he offered about the necessity of being agents of change for good in a hurting world.

He had a sense of gratitude for all that had been given him. For Don, God’s creation inspired awe and moved him to be devoted to the preservation of the natural world. He was most thankful for and proud of his family and freely acknowledged that they were of primary importance in his life.

Don is survived by his beloved wife Lorraine of sixty-six years, and his children Linda, Stephen (Karen) and Daniel (Claudia). He was blessed with six grandchildren; Andrew, Max, Lucy, Tess Isabel, Astrid and Hendrik. For the past nine years Donald has resided with Lorraine at Oakwood Village East in Madison where she will continue to reside.

Memorials may be made to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and World Vision International.