Donald Levis

Obituary of Donald J. Levis

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It is with deep sadness that we share that beloved husband, father, grandfather and uncle, Donald J Levis died on July 02, 2023 following complications from surgery. Don was predeceased by his first wife and mother to his children, Jean, his parents, William and Antoinette, his brother Richard and sister-in-law Betty. He is survived by his wife, Patricia, his son Brian (Laura), his daughter, Katherine Caesar (Queinton), his grandchildren Jettaka, Brennen, Nikolas, Mark, Gemma and Thaddeus , his nieces Connie McDermott, Paula Levis, and Sue Nigro (David). Don was born and raised in Cleveland Ohio where he enjoyed an idyllic childhood. He attended John Carroll University where he met his mentor, colleague and life-long friend, Thomas G. Stampfl with whom he pioneered the behavior therapy technique of implosive therapy. He earned his bachelor's degree in psychology and went on to earn a master's degree in experimental psychology from Kent State and a doctorate from Emory University. He attended a clinical internship at the Lafayette Clinic in Detroit Michigan and from there accepted a faculty position at the University of Iowa where he earned tenure and enjoyed working in the company of some of the greatest minds in his field. Don came to Binghamton University in 1972 and was charged with developing the doctoral training program in clinical psychology. Under his leadership and guidance the program quickly rose to prominence and its graduates were highly sought after in clinical internship programs and in faculty and research positions throughout the country. Don remained a passionate and engaging educator and research supervisor throughout his 40+ year academic career. He played an important and pivotal role in the development of the then, budding field of behavior therapy. He was also a highly gifted clinician who dedicated himself to understanding the impact of trauma on the human psyche and to helping those who bore the burden of trauma to heal. He was a deeply compassionate man who possessed the capacity to be fully present in the face of unbearable suffering. He bore witness to that suffering and helped to ease it for many of his clients. To those who knew him, Don Levis was a deeply passionate, strongly principled man who never hesitated to state his views and advocate for what he felt was right. He was kind and generous by nature and he would do nearly anything for family members or those that he considered to be friends. He was an amazing father, provider, and protector. A hero to his children, he was dependable, compassionate and provided them with unconditional and unwavering love and guidance. His death is a great loss to his family members and close friends and he will be deeply missed. The family wishes to express its profound gratitude to all of the doctors, nurses, technicians and staff members of Lourdes Hospital who provided such skilled and compassionate care to Don in the final weeks of his life. Your kindness and compassion made a difficult journey so much more bearable and allowed us to find moments of joy at such a sad and challenging time. There are no words that can adequately express our profound gratitude for all that you did for Don and for us as a family and we will be forever grateful to you. The family will receive those who wish to pay their respects at the J. A. McCormack Sons Funeral Home at 141 Main Street, Binghamton, NY 13905 on Monday, July 10, 2023from 4:00-7:00 pm. A funeral Mass will be held on Tuesday, July 11, 2023 at St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church, corner of Oak and Leroy Streets, Binghamton, NY 13905 at 11:00 am to be followed by a private interment for immediate family only. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Don's memory to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Visitation at Funeral Home

4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Monday, July 10, 2023
J.A. McCormack Sons Funeral Home, Inc.
141 Main St.
Binghamton, New York, United States


11:00 am
Tuesday, July 11, 2023
St. Patrick's Church
9 Leroy St.
Binghamton, New York, United States

Final Resting Place

Vestal Hills Memorial Park
3997 Vestal Road
Vestal, New York, United States
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Donald Levis

In Loving Memory

Donald Levis

1936 - 2023

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