John F Colebank was born February 18, 1926 on his
parent’s farm in Woodside Township, Polk County,
Minnesota to John M and Clara Nasman Colebank. He
attended the South Woodside Elementary School and
was a graduate of Mentor High School. John enlisted in
the Navy and served two years in the Bureau of Naval
Personnel in Arlington, Virginia. He graduated from
Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa with a BS degree in
Business Administration. John was an insurance
underwriter his entire career, having received his
professional designation of Chartered Property Casualty
Underwriter in 1957.
John was working in an ice cream store when he met
Joan Lawyer who was also going to Simpson College.
John and Joan were married June 20, 1951 in the
Baptist parsonage in Indianola, Iowa. Joan was born
November 20, 1929 in Osceola, Iowa to Karl M and Veda
Shaver Lawyer. Joan attended a rural elementary school
in Warren County, Iowa, high school in Indianola, Iowa
and one year at Simpson College.
|John Francis Colebank at his
graduation from Simpson
College in 1950
John and Joan’s first home was in Des Moines, Iowa where Joan was employed as
executive secretary at the Meredith Publishing Company. After John’s graduation they
moved to Peoria, Illinois where Scott and Karen were born. Next they moved to
Birmingham, Alabama and then to Prairie Village, Kansas where Julie was born. Joan
enjoyed singing and playing the piano. John enjoyed golf, bowling and bridge. Both were
active in the Lutheran Church. Joan was stricken with melanoma cancer at the young age
of 42. She died January 20, 1972 after 7 months of illness, leaving 3 children ages 7, 16
and 17. Joan is buried in the IOOF Cemetery in Indianola, Iowa.
Two years later John met Judith Schmidt at a drive-in bank teller window where Judy was
employed. John and Judy were married June 7, 1974 in Prairie Village, Kansas. They had
a small private wedding in the Faith Lutheran Church. Judith Ann Mai was born December
31, 1939 to Pete and Esther Evert Mai. Judy had two children, ages 3 and 8, from her
former marriage to Roland Schmidt. Judy grew up near Garden City, Kansas where she
attended elementary and high school. She graduated from Kansas State University with a
degree in home economics which she taught in the Shawnee District high school for
several years. Judy was homecoming queen at Kansas City State University in 1959.
Judy’s hobbies are collecting antiques, depression glass and playing contract bridge.
She is active in choir, book club and other volunteer activities. John was an active member
of the Faith Lutheran Church, serving on many committees, including on the Property
Board and Faith Lutheran Foundation. He was an Emeritus Master Gardener of America,
avid antique collector and sports enthusiast. During tax season he was a volunteer for the
tax aide program sponsored by the AARP.
John and his brother Norman were tragically killed on August 18, 2000 as they were
driving to attend the annual Oronoco flea market in Olmsted County, Minnesota. Driver
Norman was attempting to cross U. S. 52 at a dangerous intersection when his car was
broadsided by a UPS truck. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.
The children of John and Joan Lawyer Colebank are:
Scott K Colebank – born May 6, 1954 in Peoria, Illinois. He attended the University of
Kansas and Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas, where he obtained his BBA degree
in 1976. He married Kathleen Mitchelson of Pittsburgh, Kansas on October 20, 1990. They
have two children. Scott plays the cello in the Kansas City civic orchestra and is president
of the Rachmaninoff Society of North America. He has one of the largest record collections
of musical works by Rachmaninoff. Kathleen received her nursing degree from Kansas
University and is an intensive care nurse.
Karen Sue Colebank – born December 4, 1955 in Peoria, Illinois. She married Lynn
Dishon on August 1, 1986. Karen is a cosmetologist. Karen and Lynn have one son,
Preston, born February 2, 1988. Karen and Lynn like to water ski on nearby lakes and
attend antique auto shows as well as NASCAR events. They live in Leawood, Kansas.
Julie M Colebank – born September 15, 1964 in Prairie Village Kansas. She obtained a
bachelor’s degree in nursing from Kansas University. She married Andrew Scott, an
orthopedic surgeon in Kansas City, Missouri, on August 25, 1990. Julie and Scott have
two children, Sandon and Sophie. Julie and Andy like to play tennis and golf and travel to
the ski slopes when possible. They live in Leawood, Kansas.
The above information was copied from “From Whence Came The Colebanks” by Warren
Colebank, copyright 1989, p. 182, and from “William Cunningham – Pioneer, Patriarch
and Preacher” by June Colebank Blanshan, pages 381 through 391.
|John and Joan's wedding announcement
(click to enlarge)
Joan, John and baby Scott in 1954
|John graduating from Mentor High
School in 1944
John Colebank in the Navy
|John, Joan, Karen and Scott in July, 1957
John and __________
John and Joan's children Scott and Karen
Judy and John Colebank
|The original wedding party: Pastor Strand
and attendants Scott and Karen flank the
couple on their 25th wedding anniversary
|John and Judy celebrating their
|John's Obituary (2000)
(click to enlarge)
|PETER COLEBANK, father of
JAMES COALBANK, father of
JAMES D COLEBANK, father of
L S COLEBANK, father of
JOHN M COLEBANK, father of
JOHN FRANCIS COLEBANK
A young John Colebank
A young John Colebank