Ivan Plotnick was a man who was larger than life -- six feet four inches tall, with a shock of wavy now-white hair and big beard and moustache. Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, he lived in Phoenix, Arizona for 30 years but he never lost his New York his accent. He proudly served his country in the United States Air Force in the field of electronics and was stationed in Japan.
His last 25 years he enjoyed being a Senior Professor at DeVry University. Teaching was his life and his love. He not only influenced many students' lives, he literally changed them. He was beloved by his students, respected by his peers and is sorely missed by everyone he touched. If you were lucky enough to be a friend of Ivan's, he was your most fervent supporter and he championed any endeavor you may attempt and did everything he could to help you succeed.
Most of all he was fun to be around. He loved to play cards, hike and camp, and travel both the United States and Europe. His most favorite hobby however was the joy of cooking... and eating! He was simply a delight to be around and our delight to be his friend.
He kept in constant contact with his daughter Melissa, whom he was so proud that she graduated from DeVry, with his step-son Paxton, with his mother and three sisters, and all of his many life-long friends. I received over 150 (!) sympathy cards, emails and flowers from his friends and students -- we all should be so lucky. He also lost a son, Kirk, who died at age 21 from Muscular Dystrophy.
He loved life and he loved people. But all in all, I was the most lucky one - to be his wife for 25 years.
If you would like to make a donation to Ivan's Memorial in support of pancreatic cancer research, please click here.