Obituary of Mildred Virginia Donahue
Our dear Mother, Mildred V. Donahue, affectionately known as "Millie" to her loved ones, peacefully transitioned into the embrace of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on August 28, 2023. At 79 years of age, her unwavering faith shone brightly as she bravely battled cancer, leaving a lasting testament to her resilience.
Millie came into the world on February 4, 1944, in Red Bank, New Jersey, as the precious daughter of Joseph and Lucy Pace. Growing up alongside her older sister, Lucy, and younger brother, Joseph, in Little Silver, NJ, she was member of St. Anthony’s church. She embarked on her educational journey at Red Bank Catholic High School where despite her petite stature, “Little Millie” possessed an outsized personality and influence. Her passion for singing led her to become a prominent figure in her high school's glee club and theater productions. Her cheerful and helpful disposition left an enduring impression on her classmates from the class of 1962.
In 1963, Millie married our father, F. Stephen Donahue in Red Bank, New Jersey. In 1972, Millie and Steve moved their young family across the country, making their home in Northern California and later, Nevada. Their union of almost six decades would produce their most cherished legacy of 5 Children; Karen (Mark) Timothy, Stephen Donahue, Darren (Gina) Donahue, Jonathan Donahue and Brendan Donahue; 13 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Despite being a busy mom of 5 growing children, Millie always cared about the needs of others around her. She was a cherished friend to many, and consequently, the Donahue’s always had friends who were like ‘family’ nearby despite the distance from their New Jersey roots.
Millie loved the beach and took her 5 children regularly to swim and play in the ocean. She found time for her favorite sport, tennis, by enrolling the children in lessons where she could also play and enjoy the sport. She was an avid flower and vegetable gardener, hiker, reader and walker. She enjoyed many years of hiking in the Sierra Nevada mountains and later in Washington with her friends, kids and grandkids. An amazing, traditional Italian home-cook and homemaker, she blessed her children and grandchildren with delicious home-cooked meals and passed on a love of cooking to all her children. She was also a very talented seamstress and needle-work artist, sewing many beautiful dresses for her daughter and later, granddaughters. In her later years, Millie loved completing a good puzzle and anyone who came to visit was invited to join in.
Professionally, Millie always shined in whatever she chose to do. She was a bookkeeper and financial accountant for several organizations, a Real Estate agent, and served for more than 10 years as a Chief Financial Officer for the South Lake Tahoe Women’s shelter. She was an exceptional financial steward at home and at work. Most recently she served as the Treasurer of her Riverwalk Community Homeowner’s Association where she is deeply missed and remembered for her excellence.
At the age of 40, Millie embarked on a transformative journey when she began studying the Bible at Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) and she discovered what it meant to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. It was a decision that would shape her life profoundly. With unwavering devotion, she continued to follow and serve the Lord Jesus Christ throughout her lifetime. Millie's dedication was evident as she served as a leader in BSF for 35 years, finding joy in studying and teaching the Bible to young children.
Her BSF co-leaders and ‘kids’ in the Children’s School Program were always inspired by her creativity, commitment and joy. She also faithfully contributed to her church and served in Sunday School and Vacation Bible Schools in every place she called home. It's impossible to quantify the countless lives touched by Millie's steadfast commitment to teaching and guiding women and children throughout her remarkable life. In later years, her faith and love for the Lord gave her courage and stamina to care for her husband for many years before his death. Her example of self-less service and care continues to inspire us all.
Millie was simply ‘the best’ mom and grandma there could ever be, she is deeply loved and dearly missed by all of us. Her faith, love, prayers, legacy, and influence continue to have a profound impact on all our lives. She is preceded in death by her husband, Steve, her parents, Joseph and Lucy Pace and her mother-in-law, Grace (Donahue) Darcey.
A Celebration of Life Service for Millie will be held on Saturday, October 21, 2023, at 3:00 pm at Puyallup Community Baptist Church in Puyallup, WA.