Daniel L. Placko, 89, went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Monday, June 13, 2011, at Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare – All Saints.
Don met his wife Marion after they attended Park High School. Their first date was a round of golf, a sport they enjoyed playing and watching throughout their life together. After attending Wheaton College for one year Don entered the military to serve his country. During training, Don and Marion were married on the air base in Langley, Virginia, in 1945. Don learned how to fly B-24 airplanes and served actively in the Pacific theater. He was one of the first pilots to fly with radar equipped “ships” as he called them, learning to use that equipment at Langley. He retired from the service as a First Lieutenant with an Honorable Discharge.
After military service he was employed at Massey Harris for many years before joining Color Arts. Don served as President of Color Arts from 1967 through 1983. He assembled a team of owners and they purchased the company from the Heestan family. Although Mrs. Heestan had better offers from other businessmen, she trusted Don and worked out a deal that would allow him to purchase the company with his partners.
Together, Don and Marion most recently attended Calvary Memorial Church. Previously, they were longtime members of Fellowship Baptist Church, where Don sang in the choir, taught Sunday School and started a Super Senior ministry in 1985. For ten years he was dedicated to his group of “Seniors,” which included many people from multiple denominations outside of his church. Don made all feel welcome. He often brought in special talent and music for his “Seniors,” taking great joy in their happiness. He always took the time to share his faith, and the good news of His Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As time went on, the group grew to over one hundred people.
Survivors include his wife of 66 years, Marion; his daughter, Karen (Mark) Bollmeier; four grandchildren, Emily (Kevin) Bridleman, Andrew (Kim) Bollmeier, Leah Bollmeier, and Aaron Bollmeier; two great grandchildren, Isabelle Bridleman and Karis Bridleman; a sister, Helen Robinson; and several nieces, nephews and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Michael and Katherine; his brothers, Mike (Lorraine) and Steve, and a sister Anne (Karl) Andresen; and brother-in-law Wendell Robinson.
Don loved his Lord, his family, his country and his fellow believers. He was kind to everyone that he came in contact with. He was a good golfer, tennis player and loved to drive. He will be missed by many.
Funeral services for Don will be held at Calvary Memorial Church, 4000 Washington Ave., on Thursday, June 16, 2011, at 11 a.m. with Rev. Nathan James officiating. Private entombment will be held at West Lawn Memorial Park Crypts. Relatives and friends may meet with the family from 9 a.m. until the time of service. Memorials may be directed to Word of Life or Calvary Memorial Church.
The family would like to extend special thanks to Dr. Bob Gullberg, the ICU nursing team, especially Jean, and the nursing team on 2D including Sandy, Pam and Jenny, all at Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare, for their compassionate care for Don and our family.
Wilson Funeral Home
1212 Lathrop Ave., Racine 262-634-3361