Floyd Buckwalter Doner, USAF vet, Brecknock Elementary principal, Doneckers worker, active in Lions Club

By on April 26, 2017

Floyd Buckwalter Doner was welcomed into God’s Kingdom on Sunday, March 5, 2017.

Born on Mother’s Day, May 11, 1930, to Freeland B. and Maude (McIntyre) Doner in Lancaster, Floyd graduated in 1948 from JP McCaskey High School, and received a bachelor of education degree from Millersville State Teacher’s College in 1952.

Floyd is survived by his beloved wife of 63 years: Barbara Anne (Brenner) Doner, of Ephrata; daughter: Cindi, and husband David Freeburn; son: Mike, and wife Michele Doner; and grandchildren: Derek, Christopher, and Chelsea Freeburn; grandson: Mark, and wife Becky Doner; and granddaughter: Megan Doner, and fiancé Brian Snyder. Floyd is also survived by six nieces and nephews. Former exchange student, Patrick Bertrand of Lyon, France, is also a beloved member of Floyd’s extended family.

He was preceded in death by his sisters: Evelyn, and husband William Sheaffer; and Janet, and husband Dennis Myers.

Following graduation from Millersville, Floyd served for four years in the US Air Force. Floyd spent his career in education, earning a master’s degree in educational administration from Temple University. Following a brief period of teaching in Springhouse, Floyd became principal at Brecknock Elementary School in the Eastern Lancaster County School District in 1962, a role he held for over 20 years. When he retired from the district, he was serving as principal of New Holland Elementary School.

Floyd joined the East Cocalico Lions Club upon his return to Lancaster County in the 1960s, twice served as club president, and remained an active member until his death. He also served as a Pennsylvania District Governor for Lion’s International in the 1970s and could be found serving food at the Lion’s stand at the Ephrata Fair each year.

Floyd enjoyed a long tenure at Doneckers of Ephrata, working in the Men’s Store, as a model for fashion shows, and at The Restaurant at Doneckers. Floyd was also active in local theater productions from his youth through his retirement years. In his later years he was employed at Dutch Wonderland, where he enjoyed driving the monorail. He had a keen interest in gardening, and he helped host many dinner parties and holiday gatherings with Barbara (often to raise funds for local charities) in their home. Floyd and Barbara shared a passion for travel and enjoyed many adventures especially in Europe.

Floyd and Barbara were long time members of Bethany UCC in Ephrata, where Floyd served as a lay reader, acted in several church productions, and sang in the church choir for many years.

Of all his interests, Floyd’s greatest was in his family and friends. His connection to people was palpable, and his memory for names remarkable even into his later years. Floyd held an avid interest in the lives of those whose paths had intersected with his, and he carefully maintained these relationships for all the days of his life, serving as mentor to many and friend to all. As his ability to see his friends in person declined, the social media network of Facebook was a way for Floyd to stay connected. He had a legion of “friends” ranging from former students and staff, to Lions, former colleagues at Doneckers, fellow thespians, and church congregants.

A memorial service for Floyd will be held on Saturday, May 13, at 10 a.m. at Bethany UCC, in Ephrata, with reception to follow.

Memorial donations in Floyd’s name may be made to Bethany UCC, 140 E. Main St. Ephrata, PA 17522; or the East Cocalico Lions Club, PO Box 166 Reamstown, PA 17567.

Arrangements by Gravenor Home for Funerals, Ephrata. Online condolences may be given at gravenorhomeforfunerals.com.

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