Obituary

Abeyratna  Dassanayake
Abeyratna Dassanayake

May 15, 1936 - January 6, 2021
Born in Hevanpola, Sri Lanka
Resided in West Des Moines, Iowa
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Obituary

Abeyratna Dassanayake passed away peacefully at home and in the presence of family on January 6th, 2021. He was born in 1936 in Kurunegala, Sri Lanka and was the youngest son of Dingiri Banda and Manik Hamy Dassanayake. He was a proud descendent of the ancient Kandyan Kingdom of central Sri Lanka.

He attended school at Trinity College, Kandy and Maliyadeva College, Kurunegala and excelled both as a student and athlete. He was captain of the cricket team and retained his passion for the sport throughout his life. He attended the University of Ceylon where he met his classmate and future wife, Soma Margret Hettiaratchi. After teaching for a few years after graduation, he went on to work and then owned several businesses.

He was a citizen of the world and lived and travelled in Asia and Europe before finally settling in the United States in 1987. He continued his love of travel by visiting all 50 states even reaching northern Alaska in order to dip his toes in the Arctic Circle. He moved to Iowa in 2003 to be close to his daughter and her family. He was gregarious and a consummate host, making friends wherever he went. He was an avid and astute follower of politics and sports. He attended the Olympic Games in Atlanta draped in a giant Sri Lankan flag. He was an untiring supporter of both his immediate and extended family. He loved all of his grand pets and was always ready with treats to greet them.

He is survived by his wife Soma of 56 years, daughter Tamara, son-in-law Kevin Owens, and the light-of-his-life granddaughter Maya Owens. He was preceded in death by his parents and three siblings. A private family funeral will be held. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages those who wish to direct their gifts to the Food Bank of Iowa in his name.

ILES DUNN'S CHAPEL

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No services are planned.
Private