Obituary of Donna Lois Anderson
Obituary of Donna Lois Anderson
October 6, 1933 – December 18, 2021
Donna passed away peacefully on Saturday, December 18, 2021, and went to meet her Saviour where she is finally at rest.
Donna was born in Brantford Ontario on October 6, 1933. She met and married Jim Anderson and together they had three children. Dan, Virginia, and Joe. They soon uprooted their young family and moved west from Guelph to settle in Cranbrook, where Jim found work.
Donna worked as a waitress and was one of the very best. You always got a smile and great service when she served you. She loved doing that work and was a waitress until she retired. She loved living out west and always wanted to be a cowgirl, going as far as buying her own horse and calling it Black Beauty. She loved everything Western especially the music and the movies.
Donna loved all kinds of sports, especially playing ball, which lead her to get involved with Ladies Fastball teams for years here in Cranbrook and Nanaimo (once she moved there). She transitioned to slow-pitch upon her return to Cranbrook and played regularly until she was 75!
Donna’s favourite memory involving fastpitch was when she returned from Nanaimo for the weekend, to pitch on the Hair Den team with Virginia, for the Sam Steele Ball Tournament and helped them win the championship.
Her slow-pitch highlight was winning the Seniors Games held in Cranbrook. It took a great throw from Wimpy Lode in right field on a one hopper to Donna, who was stretching as far as she could at homeplate, to record the final out and secure the Gold Medal for the Cranbrook team. Joe Messer was so excited he lifted her right off the ground, swinging her around and around. Donna said later that she thinks Joe broke a couple of her ribs, but she was too excited to notice until after all the excitement was over.
Donna enjoyed ball so much that she became one of the first two carded female umpires in BC with much help and support from Alf McDonald.
When Donna retired from waitressing full time, she began volunteering at the Salvation Army and did so for over 20 years. She really enjoyed doing that work and all the other people that volunteered there.
Donna was a devoted Baptist and she attended church every Sunday and helped around the church whenever they needed assistance. In the winter her ritual on Sunday was to attend church and then don her skates and go for a few laps at the Kinsmen Arena. She also loved to swim and was a very accomplished swimmer. In keeping with her desire to be busy she then took up bowling, where she won her fair share of trophies in league play. She also got Virginia involved in bowling and they played on a league team together.
Not one to sit around idly at home, Donna bought a guitar and taught herself how to play. She used to take her granddaughter Whitney to piano lessons which lead to her learning to play a keyboard and eventually she purchased an organ and played that on a regular basis. Never having studied music, she learned both these instruments by ear! When she tired of playing music, she would break out her old cassette player and learned how to speak Spanish off the tapes she had purchased.
Donna was never a big hockey fan but spent lots of time at the local rinks watching her grandson Corey play hockey. That must have planted a seed because not long after the Kootenay ICE came to town, she and the other ICE ICE Grannies began attending every game they could. Donna so enjoyed the game she would be there to meet the Kootenay ICE bus when the returned from a road trip and went to every breakfast and dinner the fan club put on. No way you could reach her if the ICE were on the radio. She had her ear glued and would call Virginia with the score right after the game. She was really disappointed that the ICE left town but was on her way to becoming a Bucks fan.
But what to do in the summer when there was no hockey? Well, the Toronto Blue Jays were Canada’s team and Donna became their Number 1 fan. She questioned every decision the Manager made (especially John Gibbons) when they lost but would defend them with all her strength if anyone else criticized them. That was her turf. However, she still wondered why she did not receive the call to manage when Gibbons left!
Donna made many lifelong friends who thought she was a special lady and admired the way she lived her life with kindness, grace, and dignity right up until her passing. She will be missed more than she will ever know by all the people she touched on her journey.
Donna was predeceased by the love of her life Jack Robertson (whom she moved to Nanaimo to be with) and later in life her special friend Bill. Donna was the last of her family as her mother and both sisters passed away. Her grandson Steve Magis passed away in 1998, and she’s missed him every day since.
Donna is survived by her daughter Virginia (Rick), her son Dan and her son Joe (Terrie). Her grandkids Whitney (Matt), Corey (Justine), Graham (Lisa), Stephanie (Matt) and Jonathan and great grandkids Claire, Ella, Olivia, Ella-Claire, Mason, and McKenna. Also survived by her first husband Jim Anderson.
Special thanks to her doctors and the wonderful nurses from the third floor who provided compassionate care to our mother during her passing.
Donna supported a great variety of charitable organizations during her life. For those wishing to, please make a donation in her name to a charity of your choice.
No funeral at Donna’s request. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.
“A mother’s love is endless, just as the memories she has left in our hearts”