Donald Lewis Sullivan, age 87, died Sunday, July 21, 2013, at IU Health Bloomington Hospital. He had been living in Bloomington for the last 23 years, with the last two at the Bell Trace Senior Living Center. Born July 19, 1926, in Mattoon, Illinois, he was the son of Edward John and Alberta Mae (Barker) Sullivan. In 1944, after graduating from Arsenal Technical High School in Indianapolis, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps and participated in action against the enemy at Okinawa and occupation of China, attaining the rank of Corporal at the time of his discharge. Upon his return, he met and married his wife of 50 years, Joan (Niehoff) Sullivan, and took advantage of the G.I. Bill to earn a degree in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University. He worked as a chemical engineer at Eli Lilly and Company for 35 years, retiring in 1987. After retirement, he and Joan spent winters in Panama City Beach, Florida, with frequent visits from friends and relatives, especially their children and grandchildren. Don and Joan loved to travel, searching out museums and historical sites wherever they went. Don especially loved traveling to France, where he practiced reading and listening to the language that had fascinated him since high school, where he was President of the French Club. After Joan's death in 1998, he traveled frequently with his children. An avid reader and lifelong learner, Don was a regular patron of public libraries, reading deeply in all subjects and genres.
He is survived by five children, all of Bloomington: Mary Sullivan, Paul Sullivan, Julie Bobay, Tony Sullivan and Laura Kress; two brothers: James William Sullivan, of Dallas, Texas, and Lawrence Edward Sullivan, of Indianapolis; three sisters, Patricia Jean McGovern, of Tucson, Arizona, Sheila Mae Mason, of Eagle, Michigan, and Colleen Marie McVay, of Tucson, Arizona; ten grandchildren and one great-grandchild. He was preceded in death by his parents, Edward John Sullivan and Alberta Mae (Barker) Sullivan Leal; his wife, Anna Joan Sullivan; one sister, Shirley Ann Winn; and one brother, Francis Eugene Sullivan.
A reception of friends will be on Saturday, July 27, at Day Funeral Home in Bloomington from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
The family suggests to friends who wish to make memorial contributions to consider the Nature Conservancy, Goodwill Industries or the Monroe County Friends of the Library. Please send contributions c/o Day Funeral Home, 4150 E. Third St., Bloomington, IN 47401