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PENNER, Donna Gayle was born to Leonard and Evelyn Penner in the Virden Hospital on May 29, 1969. She departed this life peacefully on October 16, 2021 at the Reston Health Centre. She grew up in the Sinclair community and received her education in the Sinclair Public School and Stony Creek Private School. Donna was born again and upon confession of her faith was baptized on January 2, 1983 by Minister Herb Barkman. she was conscientious and remained faithful to her vows until the end. She spent a year in Hogan Hozhoni, Window Rock, AZ whee she loved caring for the little children. She also made close lifelong friends. She taught school for 3 years and hoped that she could teach again someday. She completed LPN training, and worked for a number of years in the Brandon General Hospital, before taking RN training so that she could get a job closer to home and the congregation. that plan worked out perfectly and upon graduating she got a job in the Virden District Hospital, where she worked as long as her health permitted. Here again, she made close friends and appreciated her co-workers. She loved caring for the sick and was an unselfish and compassionate person, often putting others' wishes above her own. Donna was always willing to help out and give her opinion if friends and family wanted some medical advice or dressings changed and continued that even after she was no longer able to work on the job. In January of 2013, Donna was diagnosed with metastic cancer. It was hard for her to accept but she fought the battle bravely and retained a positive attitude until the end. Donna was an inspiration to friends, co-workers, and later caregivers alike. Donna had dreams of taking over her parents' home when they moved into an assisted living facility, but that dream was not to be. She moved into Golden Estates the same time that her parents did, hoping to regain strength so that she could go back to work again and do the yard work and gardening that she loved to do. Instead, she continued to decline, and was hospitalized in February of 2021. She was greatly appreciated and very well taken care of. She often expressed thankfulness for the excellent care and all the company she received. Her ready smile brought cheer to all. Donna enjoyed travelling and took a number of extended trips even after she was sick and needed to coordinate chemo treatments and travelling. Outings with her nieces and nephews were always special. Her trip to the Holy Lands in 2015 was a highlight. Her co-travellers were very concerned about her health and didn't hesitate to mention her name in prayer. Those left with precious memories are her parents, Leonard and Evelyn, two sisters and one brother: Marilyn and Leonard Friesen, Paris, TX; Michael and Sandra, Sinclair MB, and their children Traci and Carson Berg, Julisa, Dustyn and Reggie from Carrot River, SK, and Vaughn Sinclair; Kendra and Darwin Toews, Reston MB, Jeanette and Greg Penner and Stacy from Whitemouth, and Jim and Scott, Reston; and Abe and nancy guenther and Jake and wife Jamie, Jonny, and Rickie who joined our family when they moved to Sinclair; and Leonard's children, monroe and Debbie and family, Paris, TX: Greg and Maria and family; Karen; Ronalda; and Justin and Sara and family, all from Pryor, OK. Donna dearly loved her nieces and nephews, and they dearly loved her in return. She gladly took Leonard's children into her heart when they joined the family and spent time with them whenever she went to Texas. Her one regret was that she would not live long enough to see her great-nieces and nephews grow up.
As published in Brandon Sun on Nov 27, 2021
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