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Don R. Lucas 1935-2017

Don R. Lucas passed away Nov. 6, 2017. Born, raised, provided, prospered, and now passed, Don Lucas’s life story began, thrived, and ended in West Frankfort. A loving patriarch to his family, a devoted friend and attorney to his community, and a passionate defender of small town governance and the sheer joy in the natural bounty of Southern Illinois.

Don was a gifted athlete and multiple sports fueled his youth at F.C.H.S. achieving honorable mention to the 1952 Illinois All State Basketball Team. He attended SIU on a track scholarship where academic pursuits led him to both bachelor of science and master of science degrees while teaching government at SIU on a resident teaching fellowship.

After graduating from SIU in 1959, he taught history and coached basketball at Murphysboro and West Frankfort High Schools. Don’s only extended leave from Southern Illinois was to pursue a law degree and teach legal writing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, graduating with a Juris Doctor of Law in 1963.

Returning to West Frankfort with a young family, Don set out to strike a professional balance of building a personal injury law practice and civic legal contributions. Although Don built a highly successful legal practice, trying cases from coast to coast, he also served as the city attorney for West Frankfort for more than 25 years while in recent years serving as a West Frankfort appointee to the Rend Lake Conservancy Board. In 1964 Don joined other local businessmen in the establishment of The First Community Bank of West Frankfort that proved successful and sustaining and Don served as the bank’s attorney and on its board until it was sold in 1990. The legacy of the bank survives today as First Bank. Don’s prestigious legal career included recognition by numerous County, State, and National Bar and Trial Lawyer Association Memberships and most notable, being awarded by his peers as being a U.S. Distinguished Attorney for more than 30 continuous years on Martidale-Hubbell (the gold standard for attorney ratings on legal ability and ethical standards).

Don will be greatly missed by family, friends and regarded by the community he loved to serve.

Illinois Lawyer Now lists obituaries for ISBA members. Please send information, including local newspaper links, to sanderson@isba.org

Posted on Nov 17, 2017 by Sara Anderson | Comments (0)
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