The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

Professor’s life honored

Members of EIU Pride, several Eastern faculty members and many others gathered to celebrate the life of retired Eastern professor Doug DiBianco Saturday. They gathered alongside DiBianco’s family in the Mainstage Theater of the Doudna Fine Arts Center.

DiBianco died Feb. 6.

In addition to several people speaking about DiBianco and sharing stories about him, a documentary about DiBianco was shown. DiBianco’s friend and Eastern alumnus Rob Kleiner created the documentary titled Andalusian Doug.

“We know my dad’s here in spirit, because he would love to be here with everybody,” said DiBianco’s daughter, Danielle DiBianco. “There’s so many wonderful faces here that my dad would love to see.”

For the celebration, the theater was decorated with several photos of Doug DiBianco throughout his life, as well as a variety of toy pink flamingos. The flamingos are in reference to Doug DiBianco’s favorite movie, Pink Flamingos directed by John Waters.

Doug DiBianco helped to create and advise EIU Pride in 1992. In honor of him, the current EIU Pride created a large paper pink flamingo with several photos of him and brought it to the celebration.

“Without Doug I would not have been the out and proud person I am,” said Kirstin Bowns, a senior sociology major and member of EIU Pride. “He gave us a home when no one else would.”

Aiden Ethington, a graduate student political science major, said that Doug DiBianco loved everything the group had ever done, regardless of what it was.

“He was our true leader. I don’t know if our meetings will ever be the same,” Ethington said.

Carol Stevenson, a retired English professor, was a co-adviser with Doug DiBianco at EIU Pride and said he was always generous and giving with his students. She said that during Pride meetings he would always bring bags full of newspapers and flyers with information on out of town concerts and movies.

Stevenson said she knew Doug since she moved to Charleston and that she often did laundry and had dinner at his house with his wife, Virginia “Ginnie” DiBianco’s insistence.

“We would try and have some family time and would play Candyland on the living room floor,” Stevenson said.

Danielle DiBianco said that the celebration has helped her to learn more about her father.

“It’s been really beautiful to hear everyone’s stories, I feel like I’m getting to know him better,” Danielle DiBianco said.

Seth Schroeder can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].

Professor’s life honored

Professors life honored

Danielle DiBianco, daughter of retired Eastern professor Doug DiBianco, speaks about her father during a celebration of his life Saturday at the Doudna Fine Arts Center Mainstage Theater. (Seth Schroeder


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