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Dr. Lanning was born on a small farm east of Brookville July 25, 1923, in the home of his parents, George C. and Stella (Loewe) Lanning.
He attended a one-room country school, having the same teacher for eight years. He graduated from Brookville High School in 1941 and joined the Navy in 1942 where he spent three-and-a-half years flying as an aviation radio man, radar operator and gunner on a dive bomber. He served two tours of duty in the South Pacific, one land based and the other aboard the air craft carrier, the U.S.S. Hornet. He was discharged in 1946, married Dorothy Curran and started college. He spent two-and-a-half years at Miami University at Oxford, Ohio, and five years at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine where he graduated in 1953. Upon graduation, he moved to Decatur County and started his veterinary practice in Clarksburg. After three years there, he moved to the present site of the Greensburg Veterinary Clinic. He humbly worked long hours, only recently telling of the many nights he would come home from getting called out and it was "too early to get up and too late to go to bed" so he'd work on paperwork for the practice till time to go to work again. He retired Dec. 31, 1990.
He was a member of Springhill Presbyterian Church 60 years, serving as an elder several years.
During his 38 years in practice, he served on the Decatur County Board of Health, the Greensburg Community School Board (was president of the board when the present high school was built and dedicated), served eight years on the Indiana Board of Animal Health, (where he was chairman five years.) and served on both the Union Bank and Main Source Boards of Directors for a total of 18 years. He was awarded the Sagamore of the Wabash in 1985 by Gov. Robert Orr.
He enjoyed sports, especially watching baseball, basketball and football and playing golf in his retirement years. Visiting with his family and friends was always a high priority for him.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife "Dot" of 52 years and one brother, Howard.
He is survived by one brother, Kenneth (Marilyn), Brookville; a son, Dr. George (Debra), Avon; one daughter, Brenda Wallace; a son, James (Debbie), Greensburg; and a son, Wayne (Karen), Batesville. In addition, he is survived by nine grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and longtime friend and companion, Louise Roach, Hamilton, Ohio.
A visitation for family and friends will be held at the Gilliland-Howe Funeral Home Sunday, May 22, from 3-8 p.m. Funeral services will be Monday, May 23, at 11 a.m. The Rev. Shannon Burford will be officiating. Burial will follow at the Kingston Cemetery.
Memorials may be given to the Decatur County Community Foundation, 101 E. Main St., Suite 1, Greensburg, IN 47240, Dr. Irwin and Dorothy Lanning Memorial Scholarship Fund or Dr. Irwin and Dorothy Lanning Memorial General Fund; or Springhill Presbyterian Church, 3954 E. County Road 640 N. Greensburg, IN 47240. Online condolences can be made to the family at www.gilliland-howe.com
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