February 6, 1958 - November 6, 2020
Talofofo Guam/Janesville, WI - Donald J. Eckert, Jr, 62, passed away in the hospital on his home island of Guam following a battle with Covid-19 and pneumonia. Before passing away, Don Jr. was blessed to be able to video chat with his wife, Tessie, his children, and his grandchildren.
Don was born in Janesville, WI, the eldest of 8 children of Donald J. Sr. and Mary L. (Ardelt) Eckert. Don graduated from high school at Divine Word Seminary in East Troy, WI. In 1977, while attending Divine Word College Seminary in Epworth, IA he met his future wife, Tessie Paulino Quiambao. He worked odd jobs during the summer and fall of 1978, in order to move to Guam. Don and Tessie were married on June 30, 1979, with both sets of parents able to attend the wedding. They have 3 beautiful children: Brianne, Jennice and Kyle.
Don had a unique and enthusiastic/irresistible laugh. He was gifted with a terrific memory for people's names, where he met people and for the impact that they had made on his life. He was always eager to make new friends. This, along with his missionary education during high school and college, conveniently led him to visit and evangelize on many of the Micronesian islands "near" his new home of Guam. He followed his passion by studying the Bible with family and friends over many years. In 2010, Don graduated from Harvest Baptist Bible College with a bachelor's degree in Pastoral Ministries. On January 16, 2011, he was ordained as a pastor. Don was now able to pastor "his own Flock" by starting Guahan Baptist Church in Ipan-Talofofo, with the mission of sharing the Gospel to raise up Christ-centered families. His education continued on to earn a Master's degree in Ministry from Northland International University in 2014. His motto was: "To live is Christ, to die is Gain".
He made as many trips back to the States and to WI as he could. Some visits were alone, but most were with his family. In the summer of 2019, he and most of his family made the trip back to WI for the first-ever Eckert family reunion. Over the past 42 years, Don's parents, all of his seven siblings, a brother-in-law, a sister-in-law and several of his nieces and nephews were able to make the 24 hour trip to Guam.
Don is survived by his wife Tessie of 41 years; 3 children: Brianne (Reyz) Romo, Jennice (Shawn) Franquez and Kylon Eckert; seven grandchildren; his siblings: Dick (Mary) Eckert, Bill (Mary) Eckert, Tom Eckert, Ann (late Rusty) Bennett, Mary (Jim "Boz") Bosben, Theresa (Eric) Guelker and Mike (Amy) Eckert. He will be greatly missed by all of us, numerous nieces; nephews; cousins; students; his Guahan Baptist church family; and friends from literally all over the world. He was preceded in death by his parents; sibling, Francs; and brother-in-law, Rusty Bennett.
The funeral service was Saturday, November 28, 2020 on Guam. If you wish to view the recorded service follow this link: https://hbcguam.org/donald-eckert-funeral