ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA Donald Slater Stokes, aged 72, passed away peacefully in Adelaide, Australia after battling with Parkinson's Disease for a decade and lung cancer for several years. His ashes will be strewn in his local cathedral garden and a plaque placed in his memory.
Don was born in Greensboro in 1940 to the late John Young Stokes and Lillian Evelyn Stokes. He graduated from UNC with honors, and was offered several scholarships including the Fulbright. After earning two Master's degrees elsewhere in the U.S., he moved to Papua New Guinea to begin a career in linguistics and English education. He next relocated to Adelaide, where he taught and published books, and after some years returned to the U.S. His heart remained, however, in Australia, and he immigrated back in 1986, residing in tropical Cairns until both children left home. He then embarked on world travels, after which he resettled in Adelaide, comfortable among the friends, arts, and culture he had grown to love dearly.
Don was an avid gardener throughout his life, and always 'stopped to smell the roses' (literally). He was a lovable eccentric, full of opinions and excited by discussion. Through his passionate and eloquent writing, his spiritual strength and dedication to the Church, and his incomparable ability to build relationships in the oddest of places, he has touched the lives of so many people in all walks of life. As a final statement of his love for mankind, he has contributed his brain to research into Parkinson's Disease.
Don is survived by daughter Marsha Davidson of Abu Dhabi, son Aaron Stokes of Japan and brother Monty Stokes of Crewe, Virginia. Treasured by his family, his friends and his parish alike, this most lovable eccentric will be greatly missed but his passion, spirituality and zest for life will live on in our hearts.
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