Lanny Thomas Wood, 60, of Durham, North Carolina, passed away June 13, 2021, at Duke Medical Center of complications from his recent diagnosis of advanced stage lymphoma.
Lanny was born Jan. 15, 1961, in La Harpe, Illinois, the youngest child of Byron and Dorothy Wood, of Webster. He graduated as valedictorian of the La Harpe High School class of 1979. He continued his education at the University of Illinois, earning a full scholarship and graduating with a degree in architecture.
In 1987, he was united in marriage with Melinda Keenan, in Park Ridge. They had one daughter, Thompson.
After a career in that field for several years, he dedicated his life to education, teaching middle school math and later introducing the Project Lead the Way program in the Orlando, Florida, area. Later he moved into training teachers in the Midwest and Southeast states on ways to incorporate STEM (Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics) into their classrooms, through his work with Project Lead the Way. He was currently employed by the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools as a high school drafting and engineering instructor.
He was an active supporter of his local churches over the years, beginning with Fountain Green Presbyterian Church, where he grew up, and continuing in both the Florida and North Carolina churches, where his wife served as pastor. He sang in the choir, facilitated theology discussions and jumped in to various volunteer roles.
Lanny loved photography, always framing the shots with an artist's perspective. Landscaping, cooking, hiking and music were other passions he enjoyed. Above all, he loved his wife, daughter and son-in-law and was excitedly anticipating the arrival of their first grandchild.
Lanny is survived by his wife Melinda; daughter Thompson (Jacob) Bellet, of Orlando; mother-in-law Marion Kennan, of Durham; brother Sam (Mary) Wood, of Elvaston, Illinois; two sisters, Marcia Wood and Marla Wood, both of Carthage, Illinois; several brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law; and many nieces and nephews.
A memorial service was held Saturday, June 21 at Pilgrim United Church of Christ, 3011 Academy Road, Durham, N.C. 27707.
Memorial gifts can be made to the church and will be directed toward caring for their unsheltered neighbors through Urban Ministries and meeting the needs of the food insecure around the world through World Central Kitchen. Memorials can also be made to Fountain Green Presbyterian Church via Sam Wood, PO Box 86, Elvaston, IL 62334.
Online condolences may be made to the family via their various Facebook pages.
Published by Daily Gate from Jun. 30 to Jul. 1, 2021.