Jeffrey Tank, 66, died at home on Monday, Oct. 28, 2019, after a courageous battle against gastric cancer. Visitation was held Nov. 1 at the Ralph J. Wittich-Riley-Freers Funeral Home. Funeral services were held Nov. 2 at the New Hope United Methodist Church. Burial will be in Memorial Park Cemetery.
Online Condolences may be made at www.wittichfuneralhome.com. Memorial donations can be made to the Jeff Tank MHS Girls Basketball Memorial Scholarship, which has been established in his honor by his former players.
Jeff was born on Sept. 28, 1953, in Davenport, the son of Wayne and Wilma (Tillman) Tank. Jeff grew up on the family farm in Durant and graduated from Durant High School in 1971 and the University of Northern Iowa in 1975.
After graduation, Jeff taught biology in Marsailles, Illinois and later moved to Muscatine, where he taught special education. In addition to teaching, Jeff coached the Muscatine High School girls’ basketball team for 28 years. During his coaching tenure, his teams won multiple conference championships, including earning several trips to the state tournament. He was recognized as the conference and district coach of the year on six occasions as well as the state coach of the year in 2003. Jeff also coached the National AAU runner-up team in 1990.
Jeff was a highly regarded high school and college softball umpire, football official and basketball referee for more than three decades, including being named NFHS Official of the Year, among other recognitions.
Jeff was well known for his unquestioned willingness to devote his time, energy and equipment to neighbors, friends and the community whenever and wherever it was needed.
After retiring from full-time teaching in 1992, he took over operation of the family farm where he raised cattle, corn and soybeans until his death. Throughout his farming career, Jeff focused on regenerative agricultural to build soil health through the use of no-till production practices, the use of cover crops and a number of other conservation practices.
On Nov. 27, 1982 Jeff was married to Jan Vincent and after her passing in 1985, later married Diana Cooney Prashak on April 11, 1992.
Jeff is survived by his wife Diana Tank of Muscatine; his sons, Aaron Tank and wife, Mary, of Cedar Rapids, and Mitch Prashak and wife, Jenny, of Ankeny; six grandchildren, Ethan, Ollie, Oscar, Natalia, Arianna, and Lily; his mother, Wilma Tank of Wilton; and two brothers, Jack and wife, Sue, of Iowa City, and Alan and wife, Margo, of Bethesda, Maryland.
He was preceded in death by his father, Wayne; one son, Branson Barrett; and his first wife, Jan Tank.