Robert F. Blanck, 87, formerly of Chestnut Hill, a lawyer and a trustee of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia for more than three decades, died Jan. 16 of complications of a stroke at Pottstown Memorial Hospital.
Mr. Blanck was a member of the Philadelphia law firm of Schubert, Gallagher, Tyler & Mulcahey, where he specialized in estates, tax law, real estate and working with nonprofit organizations.
He also served as a trustee of the Mt. Airy seminary from 1970 until his death and was board chairman from 1976 to 2003. As chairman, he served under several presidents and saw many changes to the seminary’s curriculum and campus, including the upgrading of the Hagan Administration Building and the addition of an amphitheatre in the 1970s and, more recently, construction in 1998 of the Wiedemann Center, a new dormitory for housing seminarian families, and construction of the Brossman Learning Center in 2005.
Mr. Blanck also had served as treasurer of the Lutheran Church in America (LCA) – a predecessor body of the current Evangelical Lutheran Church in America – from 1982 to 1987 and was a member of the executive board of the Eastern Pennsylvania and later the Southeastern Pennsylvania synods of the church.
He also held numerous congregational leadership positions, particularly at Trinity Lutheran Church in Germantown, where he served as president from 1966 to 1993, sang in the choir and taught Sunday School. He also was a lector at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Lansdale.
Mr. Blanck and his late wife, Barbara, were longtime residents of Chestnut Hill before moving to Skippack Township.
Born in Philadelphia, he was raised near Reading and graduated from Wilson High School. After a tour of duty in the Air Force, where he served as a radar mechanic and briefly directed a chapel choir at an Air Force base in Shreveport, La., he graduated from Muhlenberg College and the University of Pennsylvania School of Law.
He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree by Muhlenberg in 1976 and an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree by the Lutheran Seminary in 2001.
He was an ardent fan of the Philadelphia Phillies and its Reading Phillies farm team, whose games he frequently attended.
Mr. Blanck is survived by a daughter, Meredith S. Marando-Blanck; three grandchildren, and a great grandson.
Funeral services were held Jan. 24 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Lansdale. Memorial donations may be made to the Dr. Robert Blanck Fund, The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, 7301 Germantown Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19119, or the Jimmy V. Fund, 106 Towerview Court, Cary, N.C. – WF