ROCKPORT – Steven Andrew Dunker, 66, passed away quietly with his family by his side, March 6, 2014, at Hospice House of Holland after a heroic battle against pancreatic cancer.
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Steven was born in Seymour, Ind. April 22, 1947, to Paul and Sonia Dunker. Paul was a high school teacher, coach, principal and interim superintendent and Sonia was a county health nurse. As a youth, Steven enjoyed playing football, basketball and baseball in his hometown of Rockport. In the summers, he played baseball throughout the Midwest in the American Legion League and the Central Illinois Collegiate League.
Steven received a scholarship to play baseball at Morehead State University. During his sophomore year at Morehead, he met the love of his life and future wife, JoAnn Berger. In the cafeteria line, JoAnn asked him if the lemonade was good. He told her to take a sip of the lemonade on his tray. After she sipped it and placed it back on his tray, he moved it to her tray and told her it was her lemonade now. That was the beginning of a wonderful relationship that lasted 42 years.
After graduating from Morehead, Steven and JoAnn both pursued graduate studies at Indiana University. Steven attended Indiana University School of Law and developed many enduring friendships.
In 1972, upon marrying, Steven and JoAnn moved to Grand Rapids, Mich. Steven worked in the Grand Rapids Legal Aid office for one year and then took a position as an assistant prosecuting attorney with Kent County, where he remained for 30 years. He was an avid sports fan and served as a volunteer coach for both of his children's various sports teams. Steven was passionate about all sports, especially golf, and much of his time was spent on his home courses in Grand Rapids and Holland, Mich. and Las Cruces, N.M. Many lifetime friendships were made while on the golf course.
Steven is survived by his wife of 42 years, JoAnn, and his children, Steffany (Jay Harsevoort) and Jonathan (Brooke Estevez), his mother; Sonia Dunker; his sister, Juliana Dunker and his grandchildren, Lilly and Paige Harsevoort.
At Steven's request, cremation has occurred. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the Steven Dunker Scholarship Fund at the Grand Rapids Ballet School, 341 Ellsworth Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503 (616) 454-4771 ext. 11.
Steven touched many lives during his lifetime. He will be missed, but his spirit will live on within all those who knew him.
Published in Spencer County Journal-Democrat on Mar. 13, 2014