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Donald Blaine Fabian, age 88, of Erie, Pa., passed away on Monday, March 24 at UPMC Hamot, following complications due to a stroke.
Donald was born in Erie on November 16th, 1925, the son of the late William and Hazel Jeffrey Fabian.
He was a graduate of Strong Vincent High School, Class of 1943. After graduation, Donald received a football scholarship to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. His longtime friend from Erie, James Vincent, also attended university there, but it was interrupted for both of them when they joined the United States Merchant Marines to serve during World War II
. After the war, he returned to Erie and was employed in construction and eventually worked for Rapid Transit and the Millcreek School District, in maintenance.
Donald was involved in missionary work with the Presbyterian Church in New Mexico, Alaska, and The Chosen in India. He was a member and Elder of the Westminster Presbyterian Church, and had a genuine social consciousness. Donald served with Meals on Wheels for ten years, on the Millcreek School Board for six years, belonged to the local Lions Club, coached sports teams in the area, and received the Paul Harris Fellow Award from Habitat for Humanity, for his service. These are just a few examples of his eternal investment in mankind.
Donald "Rookie" Fabian could be seen around town regularly, doing whatever he could to help others. His sense of humor was at the heart of his character. He touched many lives and will be lovingly remembered. Donald had many passions: church, carpentry, sports and his community. But his greatest joy came from his family, friends and putting a smile on peoples' faces.
Besides his parents, Don was preceded in death by three brothers, Wallace Brooks, Walton Brooks, Bill Fabian and grandchild Corey Smith.
He is survived by the love of his life, wife Catherine Fabian, for 68 years; two daughters, Judith Anne Nestor (John) and Gayle Louise Smith; a son Douglas Blaine Fabian (Linda); seven grandchildren, Jodi Askins (Todd), Tracy Johns (Jake), Carrie Bastow (Scott), Benjamin Fabian, Emma Fabian, Jeff Smith, Bryan Smith (Sharon); and four great-grandchildren, Alexa Askins, Julianna Askins, Mirabel Johns and Kameron Bastow. He is further survived by several nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held in May, at the Westminster Presbyterian Church, with Rev. John Dyke officiating, with details to be announced beforehand.
Memorials may be made to the Westminster Presbyterian Church, 3642 W. 26th Street, Erie, PA 16506, or to the Chosen Mission Project, 3638 W. 26th Street, Erie, PA 16506.
Arrangements are under the care of the Burton Westlake Funeral Home, 3801 W. 26th Street, Erie, PA 16506.
Published in the Erie Times-News on Mar. 30, 2014