CHARLESTON – Mehmet Bora Unal died on August 7, 2020, nearly three years after a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. He was 71 years old. Mehmet was born on May 9, 1949 in Ankara, Turkey. Bora, as he was commonly known, came to the United States in September 1973 to pursue graduate studies in veterinary sciences at Iowa State University. There, he met Dorthy Kjergaard, whom he married on August 24, 1974. Together they had one son, Sheref Han Unal.
Bora and Dorthy provided Sheref a childhood of love, security, and fondly remembered trips to Disney. After living in various towns throughout the Midwest, they moved to Charleston, Illinois in 1987, and joined what became the Unal Veterinary Clinic. Bora and Dorthy worked together at the clinic for 33 years, until January 2020. Bora enjoyed his work, taking care of Charleston’s dogs and cats, and he loved and appreciated his loyal clients. He and Dorthy enjoyed vacationing together in various locations, but their favorite was Ogunquit, Maine. Most of all, he loved and cherished his family. He left behind a legacy of kindness, self-sacrifice for family and loved ones, and service to his community.
Bora was preceded in death by his parents, Sadettin and Zuhal Unal, as well as his only brother, Efe Unal and only sister, Kivilcim Civitci. He is survived by his wife Dorthy, son Sheref (wife Ramsey) Unal, and his four grandchildren, Ella, Lucille, Rose and Charles Unal, as well as by his niece Cagil and two nephews Ates and Atil Civitci.
Bora’s family would like thank Dr. Egner, his oncologist and friend; Carle Cancer Center in Mattoon that cared for him with great empathy and kindness; and his hospice team in the last week of his life for their wonderful care.
Donations in memoriam can be made to the Coles County Animal Shelter or the American Cancer Society and mailed in care of Adams Funeral Chapel, 2330 Shawnee Drive, Charleston, Illinois 61920.
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