Donovan S. Robertson
1956 - 2020
{ "" }
Share Donovan's life story with friends and family
Send an Email
Or Copy this URL to Share

Donovan S. Robertson

July 23, 1956-March 23, 2020

BETTENDORF-Donovan S. Robertson, 63, of Bettendorf passed away peacefully on Monday, March 23, 2020 with his wife at his side at the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf.

Due to current conditions a celebration of Donovan's life will be held July 25, 2020. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to the family to help establish a scholarship in Donovan's name. McGinnis-Chambers Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.

Donovan was born on July 23, 1956 in Davenport, Iowa the son of Donald and Elaine (Paaske) Robertson. Following his graduation from Pleasant Valley High School in 1974, he continued his education at Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois where he completed his Bachelor of Science degree in geology and political science in 1978. Donovan earned his Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from Vanderbilt University Law School, Nashville, Tennessee in 1982. He began his career in St. Louis, Missouri where he met his wife and best friend, Marian Ahrens. They were united in marriage on January 13, 1984. Donovan then returned to the Quad Cities to practice law, eventually becoming a partner at Stengel, Bailey, and Robertson P.C. in Rock Island, Illinois.

Donovan was a member of the Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri Bar Associations. He was proud to serve on the Criminal Justice Act (CJA) Panel program, as well as on the Board of Directors for Just Kids in Milan, Illinois.

Donovan enjoyed traveling with his wife, especially their trips to Italy. They had also traveled to 49 states and visited many historical sites along the way. This fueled his passion for knowledge which was apparent in his love for trivia and history. Donovan could be found most weekends playing trivia with good friends around the Quad Cities. He also enjoyed spending time in the kitchen perfecting his culinary skills and entertaining friends and family. He took pride in tending his garden enjoying his tulips every spring. Most importantly Donovan will be remembered for his wonderful sense of humor and his love for his family and friends. Donovan always said "life is about addition not subtraction" which was evident by the way he lived.

Those left to honor his memory are his wife of 36 years, Marian of Bettendorf; father, Donald Robertson of Davenport; sisters, Pamela Robertson of Colorado, Kandace Betzel of Bettendorf; five nieces, five nephews, and numerous great-nieces and nephews, whom he loved dearly, and many special friends.

He was preceded in death by his mother and grandparents.

Online condolences may be shared with Donovan's family at

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Quad-City Times from Mar. 25 to Mar. 29, 2020.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by McGinnis-Chambers Funeral Home
Not sure what to say?
View Printed Guest Book
10 entries
April 22, 2020
I just heard :( This was an attorney that actually cared! I feel blessed to have known him, however briefly, and to know his love of German music. I am so sorry to hear of his passing. My deepest condolences!
Candice Curry
April 2, 2020
God Bless you. Rest In Heaven. I just heard today and my heart is heavy. Avery honest man. Thank you.
March 30, 2020
Talking all things dinosaurs with his cousin Rick's grandson, Kaden. We will always remember Donovan's gentleness and talent.
Richard & Maria Beard
March 30, 2020
Sorry to hear of Donovan's passing. Also enjoyed working on cases with him.
March 28, 2020
What a great loss Donovan could make us all smile. My prayers are with all that loved him as he will be missed.
Jody Ortega
March 27, 2020
Anthony Claveran and Amaris Diaz
March 27, 2020
I was very sorry to hear of Donovan's passing. He was a joy to work with both professionally and personally. He always had a wonderful attitude, even when struggling with his health. He will be missed. My prayers go out to you all.

Jennifer Johnson, court reporter, U.S. District Court
Jennifer Johnson
March 26, 2020
Don was easily one of the finest people and best lawyers that I have met in 30 years as an attorney and judge. Intelligent, thoughtful, well read and good-humored only begin to describe him. He was just a tremendous person. I always enjoyed our visits. Whenever he stopped to see me about a case we would invariably spend 45 minutes discussing a wide variety of subjects and then about 10 minutes talking about why he actually came to see me. Every discussion was a pleasure. A tremendous loss for his family, the bar and the community. He will be greatly missed.
Joel Barrows
March 26, 2020
As a classmate of Donovan's in high school, I remember the pure joy he had, particularly in science lab, showing us how to melt floor wax by squirt writing on it with rubbing alcohol and lighting it with a flint, watching the flames flash and belly laughing. He and John loved to combine elements to explode. The teacher later reflected that at least they knew why they exploded, which other students didn't. He loved to laugh. He could find humor and share. He was as thought-filled, respectful, brilliant, dedicated. I enjoyed visiting at class reunions. I salute you, Donovan. My condolences to the family.
Jeude Piotter Landhauser
March 25, 2020
I think Don is in heaven playing Jeopardy and all the categories are American History.
Brilliant guy, excellent lawyer and a truly fine human. He will be missed.
John Miller
Invite others to add memories
Share to let others add their own memories and condolences