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302-478-7100 Wilmington & Hockessin, DE

Donald Wakeman Foster

Donald Wakeman Foster, 69 of Wilmington, DE, passed away peacefully on Sunday, May 5, 2024 at home with his wife, Shelley and daughter, Lindsay at his bedside following long and courageous battles with Alzheimer’s Disease and Leukemia.

Don was born in 1954 in Wilmington to parents Ralph and Shirley Foster. He attended Wilmington Friends School where he excelled as a three-sport athlete (lettering in baseball, basketball and captaining the football team). He went on to play basketball and golf at Princeton University where he earned a prestigious white sweater for captaining the 1976 Ivy League Champion golf team. Don was undefeated at #1 and carded a hole-in-one at the NCAA Golf Championship. He remained a highly competitive, low single-digit handicap golfer at the Wilmington Country Club after his collegiate career.

Although earning his Princeton degree in Engineering, Don enjoyed a prolific career in the insurance industry. In addition to being a loving, supportive, and exceptionally caring husband and father, Don thoroughly valued his time spent at the Wilmington Country Club on the golf course, and squash and paddle courts with his friends. Notably he won the Men’s Club Championship at the WCC in 1984 and 1985 as well as the National Golf Links of America Singles Invitational in Southampton, NY in 1981.

Don was predeceased by his father, Ralph Foster, stepfather Lewis Bancroft, and mother, Shirley Simonton Foster Bancroft. He is survived and will be greatly missed by his loving wife Shelley, beloved daughter Lindsay, four sisters, three brothers, two nieces and seven nephews.

Our family sends special thanks to all extended relatives and friends who have been so supportive during this very difficult time. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, June 22, 2024, at 11:00 AM at Lower Brandywine Presbyterian Church located at 101 Old Kennett Road, Wilmington, DE 19807. Burial will be private.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in memory of Donald W. Foster to: Wilmington Friends School Endowment Fund (101 School Road, Wilmington, DE 19803; or the Alzheimer’s Association (

Funeral Services

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, June 22, 2024, at 11:00 AM at Lower Brandywine Presbyterian Church located at 101 Old Kennett Road, Wilmington, DE 19807. Burial will be private.


    Jake Reis lit a candle and writes,
    Keeping Don and the rest of your family in my prayers. I’m so sorry for your loss.
    05/08/2024 04:46 pm
    Lelané Rossouw-Bancroft lit a candle and writes,
    Big D will be so missed. Shelley, thank you for caring for Don with love, patience and kindness. Love, Lanie
    05/08/2024 05:20 pm
    Roland & Mary Lu Pamm writes,
    Donny was the life of any party. He always had a golf club or a racquet by his side. Hopefully your fondest memories of him will provide comfort during this difficult time. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. With sympathy, Mary Lu & Roland
    05/09/2024 08:37 pm
    David Cress lit a candle and writes,
    To the family, I extend my deepest condolences.
    05/10/2024 09:09 am
    Keith Carpenter lit a candle and writes,
    Our deepest condolences to the Foster Family Love Sharon & Keith
    05/10/2024 01:57 pm
    Willard Glenn writes,
    Dear Shelley and family, I am so sorry to hear of Dons passing. Don and I had a lot of fun growing up a bit in Alapocas. Don and family lived right across the street. Fond memories. Sending love to all of you. My sincere sympathy. Willard Glenn
    05/10/2024 07:00 pm
    Margaret Winslow lit a candle and writes,
    Dear Fay and family…so sorry for the loss of your brother…it sounds like he enjoyed life while he could… Take care..God Bless you all.
    05/11/2024 02:39 pm
    Joseph Gager writes,
    My deepest sympathies to Don’s wife Shelley, daughter Lindsay and all of Don’s family and friends. Don had a good soul and his presence will certainly be missed. God Bless!
    05/12/2024 09:41 am
    Gene Marie Kennedy (aka Gené) lit a candle and writes,
    Prayerfully conveying loving sympathy… O my God! O Thou forgiver of sins, bestower of gifts, dispeller of afflictions! Verily, I beseech thee to forgive the sins of such as have abandoned the physical garment and have ascended to the spiritual world. O my Lord! Purify them from trespasses, dispel their sorrows, and change their darkness into light. Cause them to enter the garden of happiness, cleanse them with the most pure water, and grant them to behold Thy splendors on the loftiest mount. [‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Bahá’í Writings]
    05/12/2024 12:59 pm

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