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Donna Dee Hay

March 4, 1943 March 3, 2021
Donna Dee Hay
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Obituary for Donna Dee Hay

Donna Dee Hay, a long-time resident of Hartland, was reunited in heaven with her husband of 55 years, Tom Hay, on March 3, 2021.

Donna was born in Falls City, Nebraska on March 4, 1943 to Willard and Ruth (nee Peterson) Rathe. Upon moving to Mount Clemens, MI, she attended Trinity Lutheran Church and School and then Mt. Clemens High School. She attended Concordia Teachers College in Seward, Nebraska and earned her bachelor of science in education in 1965.

The following summer, Donna came back to Michigan and married her best friend, Tom. After teaching at St. Paul Lutheran School in Farmington, they moved from Farmington to Mt. Clemens and lived next door to Donna’s parents and her 5 siblings. Donna was hired to teach at Trinity Lutheran School by her father who was the principal and her twin sisters were her second grade students!

Years later after mentoring siblings, Donna and Tom raised three daughters of their own in Hartland. Donna first taught in the Hartland public schools and then became a beloved teacher at Child of Christ Lutheran School (now Our Savior). Donna served in dozens of capacities at both the school and church. Besides teaching third and fourth grade and organizing 10 field trips every year along with cooking projects and other annual events in the Hay classroom ~ plus meticulously color coding every entry into her record books, Donna kept score for almost every sport, helped organize the school operettas, counted offering money regularly after Sunday services, taught 8th grade Confirmation classes, opened up her home to young teachers who did not have family nearby and volunteered countless hours assisting in Kingdom work in any capacity possible, even when it meant getting up at 4:30 every morning to grade papers and prepare for the day.

Donna wholeheartedly supported her girls in what they enjoyed doing and rarely missed a game, piano concert, ballet recital or gymnastics meet and usually volunteered in some way in a seemingly never ending amount of willingness to assist.

She also loved to spend time with her large family or with friends playing cards like bridge or euchre. She played the piano, liked to drink hot tea, excelled in math ~ especially a challenging Sudoku puzzle, loved a sweet dessert and later in life she enjoyed traveling to places like Graceland and even Germany. She adored all of her dogs over the years, but especially Molly and Tory.

In most recent years, Donna’s health declined as Alzheimers set in, but she will be remembered for serving her Lord through her dedication to the church and school and for having a profound effect on hundreds of children and their families as she helped shape, mold and discipline them with the love of her Savior.

Donna is survived by her daughters Heidi (Dennis) Wingle, Holly (Mike) Cabana, and Heather (Joachim) Cummings; grandchildren Doug, Sam, Jay and Maddie Wingle, Kylie, Cole and Kendall Cabana, and Kailynn, Kova, Kennedi and Kadence Cummings; great granddaughter Kohen Cummings, as well as her entire beloved Rathe family including her siblings Marlie (Jim) Nazarko, Kathy (Mark) Reither, Bill (Cheryl) Rathe, Linda (Dan) Ramthun and Lori (Paul) Looker as well as all of her nieces and nephews and their children. She was preceded in death by her parents Willard and Ruth Rathe, her infant daughter Holli, her nephew Luke Reither and her niece Kelly Bowman.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, March 11, 2021 from 1:00pm-9:00pm at Our Savior Lutheran Church 13667 Highland Rd, Hartland, Michigan 48353 .

A memorial service will be held at the church on Friday, March 12, 2021 at 11:00 am. Visitation begins at the church at 10:00 am.


Memorial contributions may be made to Our Savior Lutheran School 13667 W. Highland Road Hartland, MI 48353 or online at https://www.shelbygiving.com/app/giving/oursaviorhartland.

Previous Events

Visitation

Thursday

11

Mar

1:00 PM 3/11/2021 1:00:00 PM - 9:00 PM 3/11/2021 9:00:00 PM
Our Savior Lutheran Church

13667 Highland Rd
Hartland

Our Savior Lutheran Church
Hartland
United States

Service

Friday

12

Mar

11:00 AM 3/12/2021 11:00:00 AM
Our Savior Lutheran Church

13667 Highland Rd
Hartland

Visitation begins at the church at 10:00 AM on Friday

Our Savior Lutheran Church
Hartland
United States
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