David Stendeback, far right, and his brothers, Rich and Bill.

David Stendeback and his beautiful wife, Deanna.CARROLLTON - Carrollton Mayor David Stendeback, 55, died today after a battle with cancer. He will be remembered for his smile, sense of humor, commitment to his family first and foremost, and community.

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Carrollton resident Rick Hires said the community is a better place because it had David Stendeback. David was only on medical leave from his position as mayor, but was still elected in that capacity at the time of his death. David’s wife, Deanna, and three children and two grandchildren survive.

“David served two different terms and each time was very productive,” Hires said. “When David became mayor a lot of county procedures changed and he helped the city and Cemetery Board have a lot more clear picture financially. He did a lot of positive things for the city that went unnoticed. I am very sorry for his loss.”

One of David’s passions was golf, Hires said. Rick, David and some others spent a lot of time on golf greens.

“He was always a joy to be around,” Hires said. “He had a great sense of humor. We always left the golf course laughing when David was there.”

In a small town, the mayor is always an easy target for people, however, David always handled everything with grace and dignity,” Hires said.

“He was very, very calm and never got excited over issues,” Hires said. “He had a great sense of self and would never let ego get in the way of any decision. He was a wonderful person and it is a horrible loss.”

David was a member of the Carrollton High School Class of 1978 and was a standout athlete, participating in football, basketball and track during his high school years.

Carol Nolan Olmstead said this about Stendeback, which could stand as a testament for the rest of his Class of 1978: “We've lost a great friend and my heart is so heavy, not for him, not for myself, but for his family. Rest in peace my dear friend. Soar with the Angels. Go with God. You will be in my heart forever David. Deepest sympathy to Deanna Stendeback. He always told me, 'You're the best!' No. He was the best!”

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Lynn Stendeback, David’s sister in law, said she and her husband, Bill, have been married for 40 years and David was like “my little brother.”

“He battled the cancer like a stallion,” she said. “I never once heard him complain about it. He was very devoted to his family and to the city of Carrollton.”

Bill Stendeback, David’s brother, will do the funeral arrangements. He owns multiple funeral homes in Southern Illinois. The funeral process will take place at St. John’s Church in Carrollton.

The Stendeback family was always very close, Bill said. One of their brothers, Dennis, died at a young age of 46 of a heart attack and that was very hard on the family, he said. Now he said, David’s loss is even more difficult. He and Bill and Dennis’s other brother, Rich, remained close, Bill said.

Bill said he was proud of David’s efforts as mayor.

“I think he did an awesome job and he fixed a lot of things and had the city set up to be in good shape for the future,” Bill Stendeback said.

For David, his wife and family always came first, Bill Stendeback said.

“He fought the most courageous battle of anybody I have ever seen with that disease (cancer),” Bill said. “He was never negative about it. He had a positive attitude and we knew he would lose the battle, but he never lost in his mind. I loved him so much.”

One of David Stendeback's deepest passions was playing golf.


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