Dr. William M. Shanklin, 84, a retired professor of histology and neuroanatomy at the American University in Beirut, Lebanon, and a resident of Silver Spring since 1967, died of cancer Saturday at Montgomery General Hospital.

Dr. Shanklin was on the faculty of the American University in Beirut for 37 years before retiring in 1962. He served at different times as chairman of the histology and neurology department and of the medical sciences faculty research committee. He was the author of more than 80 papers in his field.

After returning from the Middle East in 1962, he was appointed A.D. Williams Distinguished Scholar in the Medical Distinguished Scholar in the Medical College of Virginia's anatomy department in Richmond.

He moved to Rossmoor Leisure World in Silver Spring in 1967, where he had been legislative chairman and president of the local chapter of the American Association of Retired Persons. He also was a member of the Kiwanis.

Dr. Shanklin was a native of Fork, Md., and earned a bachelor's degree at Blue Ridge College in Maryland in 1921 and a doctoral degree at Yale University in 1929.

Survivors include his wife, Gladys Jones Shanklin, of Silver Spring; a daughter, Annabel S. Perlik of McLean; a son, William M. Jr., of Sterling, Va., and six grandchildren.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Rossmoor Interfaith Chapel, 3608 South Leisure World Blvd., Silver Spring.