Donald Frank Lechtrecker

Donald Frank Lechtrecker, 75, passed away peacefully in his sleep at Stony Brook University Hospital on May 8, 2022, following his hospitalization for COVID-exacerbated respiratory illness. 

Originally from Patchogue, Donald made Orient, N.Y., his home for the past 30 years. 

After graduating from Patchogue High School in 1965, he attended college at Southampton University and Adelphi. He served in the Army during Vietnam and upon his honorable discharge his life’s journey took him to 49 states, other countries and a wilderness adventure in Canada. His passion for travel led him to work as a freelance lineman for many years, and his passion for nature led him into the art world, using sand and wood to make creative enhancements. His passion for our natural world led him into literature as well, where he authored an environmental-themed children’s book. 

An ardent believer of how we are all connected to one another and our environment, Donald frequently lamented upon man’s overdevelopment of the planet, causing a diminished habitat for the animals and the extinction of many animal species. 

Donald later returned to his true love, the sea, where he enjoyed working for many years as a commercial fisherman. 

An avid reader, Donald held a keen interest in the universe and cosmos, continually pursuing greater knowledge of our very existence. 

Most of all, Donald will be remembered by many as an ardent animal lover and another “Dr. Dolittle” for his ability to converse with the animals. He counted many raccoons, squirrels and wild birds as his friends, and they would visit him, waiting for him to feed them treats. Donald would do anything to help the animals, including transporting an injured raccoon to a private farm upstate so it would have a better life or stopping traffic for turtles to safely cross the road. 

In Donald’s own words, he was “neither charlatan nor rogue.” 

He was predeceased by his parents, Norman and Nan Lechtrecker. Donald is survived by his fiancée and soulmate, Wendy Lomas; his brother, Gary Lechtrecker; his sisters, Lynn Cerillo and Kerri Lechtrecker; and a daughter, Jacqueline “Kat” Cummings. He is also survived by many cousins, nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, May 21, from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. at Robertaccio Funeral Home in Patchogue, where we will celebrate and remember our beloved fiancée, brother, uncle, father and friend. 

In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations be made to the North Fork Animal Welfare League or any other animal assistance organization.

This is a paid notice.