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David Preston Ransburg

December 17, 1938 November 11, 2017
David Preston Ransburg
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Obituary for David Preston Ransburg
David Preston Ransburg, 78, of Peoria passed away Saturday, November 11, surrounded by his family.

Dave is survived by his wife Zan, his son David Preston Ransburg, Jr. (Jennifer) of Deerfield, Illinois, his daughter Emily Ransburg Cittadine (Andrew) of Winnetka, Illinois; his four grandchildren: Cecilia Ransburg, Harper Ransburg, Eric Cittadine, and Alexander Cittadine; and his brother Thomas Ransburg of Santa Fe, NM.

Dave was a successful businessman, a tireless advocate for the community, and an incredibly loving and generous husband, father, grandfather, and friend. Anyone who had the fortune to know Dave personally knows that he was loyal, generous, caring, warm, and witty.
As a young man, Dave became an Eagle Scout, and he continued to support Boy Scouts of America throughout his life.

Dave earned his B.S. from Purdue University and his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School. In 1972, Dave ventured out on his own, buying a small sprinkler company, L. R. Nelson. Dave and his family relocated to Peoria, and for several decades, L. R. Nelson grew and prospered under Dave’s leadership—becoming one of the worlds’ leading manufacturers of lawn and garden sprinklers. Although headquartered in Peoria, L. R. Nelson had offices and distribution facilities all over the world. In 2008 the company was sold, and Dave retired.

Dave was Mayor of Peoria from 2001-2005 and served as councilman for the City of Peoria from District 5. He actively worked to find ways to improve Peoria by volunteering for roles on various boards: Chairman of the Peoria Riverfront Museum, Wildlife Prairie Park, Chairman of Peoria Civic Center, Peoria Vision 2020, Peoria Civic Federation, Bradley University, Methodist Health Services, Salvation Army, American Red Cross, Greater Peoria Economic and
Development Council, Peoria Symphony, Peoria Academy, American Cancer Society, Peoria
Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, Boy Scouts of America, and the YMCA. He was a member of Young President’s Organization (founding the Illini chapter of this organization), Peoria Rotary Club, and the Country Club of Peoria.

Dave was an advocate for small business and served in various capacities. He was selected Illinois Small Businessman of the Year in 1984. He served on a variety of business councils and advisory boards such as Illinois Business Roundtable, Illinois Municipal League, Illinois Tax Increment Association, Illinois Civil Justice League, Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, Small Manufacturing Action Council, Illinois Export Council, 2004 Republican National Convention Alternate, Republican National Committee’s Small Business Advisory Council, and Delegate to the 1980 White House Conference on Small Business.

Other civic awards and recognitions include Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Citizen of the Year, Tom Connor Award by Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce, and Methodist Medical Center Foundation President’s Award.

Dave enjoyed reading, traveling, flying, photography, skiing, nature and most of all being with family. Unbeknownst to most, he was a writer of poetry and song lyrics, and he designed jewelry.

He had great admiration for his grandfather, Harper J. Ransburg, and authored the book “The Ransburg Collection” in his honor (a story about his grandfather’s entrepreneurial spirit). His grandfather instilled in him the philosophy to “leave everything better than when you got there.”

A memorial service will be held Saturday, November 18, at 10:00 a.m. at First Federated Church in Peoria.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to either the Peoria Riverfront Museum, to the Boy Scouts of America, or the MSA Coalition,

Friends and family may sign the online guestbook or send private condolences by logging onto
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Previous Events

Memorial Service




10:00 AM 11/18/2017 10:00:00 AM
First Federated Church of Peoria

3601 N Sheridan Rd
Peoria, IL 61604

First Federated Church of Peoria
3601 N Sheridan Rd Peoria 61604 IL
United States

Cemetery Details


Springdale Cemetery Final Resting Place

3014 N Prospect Rd
Peoria, IL 61603

3014 N Prospect Rd Peoria 61603 IL
United States

Memorial Contribution

Boy Scouts Of America

614 NE Madison Ave
Peoria, IL 61603

MSA Coalition

9935-D Rea Road, #212
Charlotte, NC 28277

Peoria Riverfront Museum

222 SW Washington St
Peoria, IL 61602

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