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Rev. Delbert Frank Shinabarger

The Rev. Delbert Frank Shinabarger, 63, Woodstock, died peacefully Sunday, Feb. 23, 2014, at Centegra Hospital-Woodstock.

He was born March 21, 1950, to Ray and Ruth (Erdly) Shinabarger in Flint, Mich.  

On Dec. 31, 1976, he married Barbara Lynne Kenney in Bradenton, Fla.

He graduated from Hill-McCloy High School, Montrose, Mich., as salutatorian of his class.  He was a cadet at the US Air Force Academy from 1969 to 1971 and served in the US Army in Nuremberg, Germany, from 1976 to 1980.  He received a bachelor of arts in history from Spring Arbor College.  He earned a Master of Education degree from Boston University in counseling psychology.  He received his Master of Divinity from the Church of God School of Theology, Cleveland, Tenn. 

He directed Christian Servicemen’s Centers for the Church of God in Germany and Italy from 1980 to 1983 and the Christian Education program at Church of the Cross in Bradenton, Fla., from 1985 to 1988.  From 1989 to 2000, he pastored Free Methodist churches in Michigan and Illinois in various capacities, including senior pastor at three locations.  As chaplain, he served at Hearthstone Manor in Woodstock, at Rockford Memorial Hospital, at Rush Presbyterian Hospital in Chicago, at Elmhurst Memorial Hospital, at Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington and with VITAS Hospice in Lombard and Huntley.

He was widely known for his storytelling and his musical talent and was affectionately called the “Singing Chaplain.”

Survivors include his wife; four children, Jonathan (Amy), Daniel, David (Valerie) and Rachel; one expected grandchild; four brothers, Ron (Jeanette) Shanahan, the Rev. Ray Daniel (Judy) Shinabarger, Phillip S. (Tammy) Shinabarger and Curtis W. Shinabarger; a sister, Ruth Ann Massie; a sister-in-law, Patricia Shinabarger; his uncle and aunt, Bob and Ilene Shinabarger; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and a brother, Richard Shinabarger.

Visitation and funeral were held Feb. 27 at the Free Methodist Church. Interment with military honors was at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery, Elwood.

Memorials can be made to the family for his children’s post-secondary education.

Arrangements were made by Schneider-Leucht-Merwin & Cooney Funeral Home.


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