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Saturday, September 5, 2009

Former Kansas football player Shanklin dies

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Former Kansas University football player Donnie Shanklin died Aug. 30 in his hometown of Amarillo, Texas, at the age of 62.

A funeral for Shanklin, MVP of the 1969 Orange Bowl, is today at Mount Zion Baptist Church in Amarillo.

In the 1969 Orange Bowl, Shanklin handled the ball 19 times gaining 122 all-purpose yards. A three-year letterwinner from 1966-68, Shanklin led KU in rushing in 1966 gaining 732 yards on 182 attempts.

Shanklin played in the NFL, Canadian Football League and World Football League. In his later years, he was a professional golfer.

Comments

chezlog 10 years, 4 months ago

Bummer. I remember praying that Shanklin would return the kick off and score on Penn State after they got ahead in the closing minutes of the '69 Orange Bowl. It didn't happen but he had done so many amazing things that season, that I really thought it would. I'm sorry he's gone.

gardenjay 10 years, 4 months ago

Wow, he turned all of that into becoming a professional golfer! Talk about a different skill set. Some of these people are truly amazing, it makes you want to get more information that just this little bit. Still, thank you for mentioning this talented man - yet another KU inspiration.

Kman_blue 10 years, 4 months ago

Simply put, that just sucks. My best wishes go out to his family and friends. He had a great game in the '69 Orange Bowl and I think he was in the stands sitting with his teammates at our 2008 Orange Bowl. I'm glad he got to witness that and meet up with his old teammates.

In case anyone wants to read a good more in-depth story on Donnie written by the local Amarillo newspaper about him a couple of years ago, here it is.

http://www.amarillo.com/stories/123007/mor_9275776.shtml

cwag 10 years, 4 months ago

Thanks for the links, Kman. Donnie was one of my favorites growing up. Dressed up as him (#48, same as Sayers) for Halloween several years. RIP

MinnesotaJay 10 years, 4 months ago

I have been living in Amarillo for the last year and was able to make it to Donnie's service. There were about 500 in attendance. The whole service was incredibly powerful and moving. Donnie couldn't have asked for a better sendoff.

I was privileged to be able to be at KU in '68-'69 to watch Donnie who was one of the standouts on what I still consider KU's best team ever.

And, included as part of Donnie's printed memorial piece was a photo from his playing days at KU, as well as a mention within the written narrative. Followng the service, when I got out to my car (which has Jayhawk license plates), I found a business card and nice note from another Jayhawk who was in attendance.

It seems like the love was mutual yesterday.

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