William “Creighton” Funke, son, brother, grandson, nephew, cousin and friend from Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida passed away peacefully on Tuesday March 21, 2023, at the age of 21. Creighton had the same birth date as his grandfather Creighton McShane and so it was only natural that he would also be called Creighton. He was born on March 10, 2002, in Orlando, Florida to Bill and Suzanne (McShane) Funke.
Creighton lit up the room with his infectious smile. He brought laughter to a new level with his friends and family. Creighton cared more for others than he did himself and, in true fashion, Creighton was an organ donor. While in the hospital he fought hard so donor recipients could be perfectly matched. We are consoled his heart continues to beat on giving the gift of life to a 13-year-old girl; one of his kidneys to a 3-year-old boy on dialysis for two years; his other kidney to a mom in her thirties. And he gave the gift of sight to two individuals. We are humbled by such selfless gifts.
Creighton was a student at Florida State University. After navigating the challenges of COVID his first year at Auburn he decided to make the move to Tallahassee where he could be near his friends who meant so much to him. Prior to FSU Creighton was a 2020 graduate of Ponte Vedra High School, and Landrum Middle all in Ponte Vedra Beach and The Park Maitland School in Maitland, Florida. It was at his time at Park Maitland when Creighton’s deep love and passion for sports began to awaken. While others his same age were distracted on the field looking at passing trains or catching butterflies, Creighton focused on the tasks at hand. This competitive fire continued to build as he began club lacrosse in the second grade and beyond. Donning jerseys for the Renegades, Braveheart, Ravens, LCO, Team Florida, Patriots, and the Ponte Vedra Sharks for four years.
Creighton was a two-sport athlete and although Lacrosse may have been his first love, the love of his life when it came to sports was football. His passion for playing ignited at Landrum and he continued to play at Ponte Vedra High School for 4 years. Once a Shark always a Shark. Creighton seemed most happy when out on the field of play where the results, no matter a win, or a loss, brought the team closer together. While watching a game with him, you would be enriched by his vast knowledge of the contest and its participants at the college and NFL level. The coaches and players would suddenly come to life as Creighton shared what made those personalities tick and what caused them to drive the game forward.
Creighton loved the state of Florida but also had a special place in his heart for the states of Maine and Idaho. Summers in Maine provided special memories of time spent on the water learning to sail from an early age. Race days were filled with laughter as he challenged the skipper’s football IQ. Enjoying the summer days on the water with cousins and family, island hikes after long salt-stained boat rides, lobster bakes, lighting Roman candles off the rocks, and finding shooting stars all through the night during a special time of wonder. When out in Idaho, again with the cousins, the days were spent skiing trails like Flying Squirrel, evenings by the fire, hiking and biking into late summer evenings and camping in the Sawtooth Range. As we cherish these memories, we will miss him dearly.
Creighton is survived by his parents, Bill and Suzanne; older brother, Taylor; younger brother, Egan; maternal grandparents, Creighton and Louise McShane of Vero Beach, Florida and Winter Harbor, Maine; paternal grandparents, Fred and Lucy Funke of Bouckville, New York; aunts and uncles Margot McShane, Nina Gardiner (Skooter), Fred and David Funke; cousins, Katie, Nick, Vance Gardiner and Luca, Isa, and William D’Amario McShane.
In Lieu of flowers, we ask you to consider donating to the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund.