in loving memory of
1927 - 2021
Live-streamed Memorial Service
Laban Peachey, 94, a resident of Harrisonburg, died on Friday, April 23, 2021 at Woodland Park Circle of VMRC.
Mr. Peachey was born on April 6, 1927 in Springs, PA, just before Charles Lindbergh’s solo flight across the Atlantic. He was a son of the late Shem and Salome Bender Peachey, one of ten children.
On June 17, 1953, he married Helen Mumaw whom he met while attending Eastern Mennonite College. They had been married 47 years when she died on December 14, 2000.
Laban began his life on a farm and had a life-long love of raising beef cattle. He was an expert at fixing fences, which for him was recreation. During World War II he was drafted, and as a conscientious objector did alternative service through Civilian Public Service. He graduated from Eastern Mennonite College (EMC) in Harrisonburg in 1952 and received a M.Ed. from the University of Virginia in 1958. In 1963 he completed an Ed.D. from George Washington University. Laban taught psychology at EMC from 1954-1968 and was also Dean of Students. From 1968-1980 he served as President of Hesston College in Hesston, Kansas. He worked at Mennonite Mutual Aid in Goshen, Indiana until retirement. With Helen he returned to Harrisonburg where he farmed and had teaching roles at Eastern Mennonite College and Seminary.
Christian faith and church involvements were central to Laban’s life. He served as Conference Moderator of Virginia Mennonite Conference and deeply enjoyed eleven interim pastor roles with churches in Virginia and Pennsylvania. Laban loved working with and being with people, and one of his greatest joys was spending time with family. He also appreciated being in God’s creation and in his later years made a habit of taking a walk outdoors twice a day. Over the years he often talked about death as a natural part of the life cycle—his philosophy was that one ought to “live until you die.”
Surviving are his children, Phyllis Friesen and husband Eugene of Harrisonburg, Lowell Peachey and wife Rita of Kansas, Byron Peachey and wife Deanna Durham of Harrisonburg, Joyce Peachey Lind and husband Myron of Harrisonburg; siblings, Urbane Peachey of Pennsylvania, Jane Lind of Ontario, Canada; 11 grandchildren; and 7 great-grandchildren.
In addition to his wife and parents, Laban was preceded in death by two brothers and five sisters.
Pastors Phil Kniss and Paula Stoltzfus will conduct a virtual memorial service on May 8 at 2 pm. It can be viewed live (or afterward) by clicking the video link above. Burial is being held privately.
There will be no viewing or visitation at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Eastern Mennonite Seminary, 1200 Park Road, Harrisonburg, VA 22802 or Hesston College, PO Box 3000, Hesston, KS 67062.
Online condolences may be made to the family by visiting www.mcmullenfh.com, or clicking the guestbook link above.
McMullen Funeral Home in Harrisonburg is in charge of arrangements.