Douglas C. Graybill, 80, of Windfall, died peacefully on April 13, surrounded by his wife and loving family. Doug was born December 11, 1941, in Lancaster, PA.
Surviving are his loving and devoted wife of 59 years, Leona Stoltzfus Graybill; children Kathleen (Keith), Carole (Jeff), Grace (Shayne) and Dave (Georgia); grandchildren Dustin, Ryan (Kristina), Dylan, Bradin, Nathaniel, Morgan, Aero and Iris; great-grandchildren Kylee and Rylan. He was the son of Donald Cunkle Graybill and Erma Elizabeth Smeltz.
Born a single child, Doug found enjoyment in adding people to his life. He was quick to strike up conversations and find shared interests. Those who knew him understood that his warmth was sincere and memorable.
Doug's early experiences with family taught him the value of hard work, thriftiness and building relationships. But he also was quick to learn the value of a good joke or a funny story, and cherished those memories as highlights in his life. He was energized by multiple pursuits that engaged him in research and exploration to realize his ideas. This began when he was a teen building a dairy herd, his avid reading habit and passion for history, building a Bison herd, a Master’s Degree to support pastoral leadership and woodworking.
Doug shared his dad's passion for hunting, resulting in trips to Potter County, PA, and Wyoming and Colorado. A Mennonite neighbor Elvin Krantz was an instrumental mentor who set him on a life journey in both farming and Christian ministry. Youth groups offered friendships that were a touchstone for hockey, softball and mischief. One of their outings to the PA Farm Show presented a fortunate sighting of a green-sweatered girl, a well-known story of how he met the love of his life, Leona. A short courtship ensued with a marriage on Dec 21, 1962. Leona's family welcomed him into their large fold which was a meaningful turning point in his personal growth. Doug and Leona's first farm in Trout Run cemented his love of agriculture, and he continued on that path with an Agricultural degree at Penn State.
They began another farming endeavour in Centre County with their young family. In Doug's acceptance to lead a church in Wheelerville, he blended farming and pastoring. Doug and Leona continued as a pastoral couple for Wheelerville Mennonite Church, Canton Mennonite Church and North Street Community Church for 38 years. Their ministry was one that touched lives with warmth and sincerity. Doug was committed to deepening spiritual growth through building relationships.
There will be a Celebration of Life held in his honor held at the North Street Community Church on Sunday, April 17, at 4pm.
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