Donna Jean Strange passed away peacefully in her sleep on March 31st, 2022 at Nottingham Health and Rehabilitation. She was a loving and social woman whose compassionate heart knew no stranger. Her love for life, friends, and family is something all who encountered her were blessed to experience.
Donna was born on December 26th, 1932, on a farm located in Monett, Missouri. She was the daughter of Bonnie Williams Cassity and Erban Cassity. Throughout her young life Donna lived in Wichita, KS and Wenatchee, WA. In 1949, her family moved to Augusta, KS. Donna worked at the Augusta Movie Theatre as a ticket taker. This is where Donna found her love of old-time movies, her favorite being Gone with the Wind. She even collected the yearly Hallmark ornaments from this movie.
While attending Augusta High School, she met the love of her life Jack Strange. They met at a friend’s party where they each brought someone else. During the party they began talking. It soon became clear that their dates had left the party without them. It was then that they decided to go downtown to a little café and get to know one another over a slice of pie and coffee. Donna knew her mom would not approve that she did that, but she just had a good feeling about him. Shortly after, they fell madly in love and married on June 1, 1951, after she graduated high school. Their love was timeless and continued to flourish for 67 years until Jack’s death in 2018. They traveled to numerous places together, but they always came back home to Augusta.
In 1960, Donna began to work for Augusta State Bank as a bank teller alongside her sister, Sharon. She was very close to her. One of Donna’s fondest memories was living next door to her and raising their children together. Donna was a terrific bowler and was part of the Lehr’s Women’s Bowling team where she won numerous awards.
Donna was an affectionate and devoted wife, mother, and cherished grandma (AKA Mamaw). She always enjoyed sitting beside Jack in the morning and watching the Price is Right. Afterwards, she would sit and indulge in her daily soap operas. Jack and Donna had one son, David, he was her pride and joy. She always mentioned that the day he made her a mom was her proudest moment. She loved watching him grow up and start a life of his own. Donna and Jack soon realized that home was wherever David was and relocated to both Lawrence, KS and finally Overland Park, KS just to be closer to him.
Their little family of three eventually grew bigger with the addition of David’s wonderful wife, Stephanie, and their two beautiful children, Alyssa and Brent. Family was everything to Donna and she could be found spending time with the people she loved and cherished most. Donna always smiled when Brent would sing to her and would often hum along. She enjoyed teaching her grandchildren how to play her favorite games Super Mario and Wahoo. She never missed a single moment in her family’s life. She wanted to remember and celebrate it all. Donna was elated when Alyssa married Aaron Holsworth in 2019 and then made her a great-grandma with the birth of Jackson Holsworth in 2021. She loved her little Jack and was happy that she got to watch the first year of his life unfold.
Donna is preceded in death by her parents, sister Sharon, and her dear husband Jack. Donna leaves behind her son David, daughter-in-law Stephanie, grandchildren, Alyssa Holsworth (Aaron), Brent and a great grandson, Jackson Holsworth all of Overland Park, KS. She also has a niece, Linda Bower, nephew Dale Borg, brother-in-law Bill Borg, and many close friends that have become family to her. She had a special way of making you feel loved and always knew what to say. Donna’s big heart will be greatly missed by all.
A celebration of life will take place on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, at 5:30pm at 8819 W. 118th Terrace, Overland Park, KS, 66210. In lieu of flowers, a contribution in her name may be directed to the Arthritis Foundation.