Deceased June 26, 2021

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In Memory

Don died in Vero Beach, Fla., on June 26, after a short fight with cardiac disease. He is survived by his high school sweetheart and wife of 65 years, Nancy Flint Buebendorf; daughter Laurie Pallin; son Jeff Buebendorf; five grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Don was raised in Chappaqua, N.Y., matriculating to Amherst from Horace Greeley High School. He received his M.D. from Yale in 1960, completing his pediatric residency there. Don was a small-town doctor, often making house calls at night. After retirement from pediatrics, he and Nancy moved to Danbury, N.H., where they opened a B&B. Famous for homemade popovers, which he perfected after years of experimentation, Don treated guests to gourmet breakfasts for special occasions. Don always made special time for his grandchildren; each waited excitedly until it was their turn for a trip to NYC to watch the Nutcracker ballet.

Don and Nancy retired a second time, to Vero Beach, and spent summers at Lake Toxaway, N.C., where Don developed a passion for the sport of formal croquet. His persistent advocacy led to the creation of croquet courts at Indian River Estates, where the ribbon-cutting ceremony, just weeks before his death, made him very proud.

Don’s greatest hobby was photography. He commemorated every occasion by creating a book of photos for the participants. As an ardent hiker, he hiked all the Appalachian 4,000-footers with son Jeff.

As a homeowner, Don never hired others to do work he could do himself, including growing his own food. He especially enjoyed working in his huge vegetable garden. But most of all, he cherished time with his wife and family. Living life to the fullest, he earned the respect of his children and grandchildren for his integrity, perseverance and tenacity.

Peter Levison ’56


Jane Moravek: Don Buebendorf was the poster boy for the term “life well lived.” He was an outstanding pediatrician of the school of common sense. He loved the outdoors. He had a practical approach to every problem. He was devoted to his beloved wife Nancy, and he always exhibited generosity to those he encountered on his road of life.