Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing obituaries submitted in the last month by graduates in 1979
Donna Jean Parsons M.A. ’79, June 19, 2013. She died at her home after a long battle with cancer, multiple myeloma. Donna was born in Dunsmuir to Art and Vera Parsons, the middle of 3 children. She attended local schools, graduating from DHS in 1961. Donna was active with cheerleading, Rainbow Girls, and academic clubs, making many life-long friends. Donna was accepted at UC Berkeley, which was as far from her small town experiences as she could get! She was grateful to all of her teachers, including Ramey Drake, Grace Harris, and Reva Coon, as well as her parents, for encouraging her academic achievements and instilling a drive for higher education. After graduating from Cal, Donna worked in the social welfare field in several northcoast and SF Bay Area counties, finishing up that part of her career as an adoptions social worker in Alameda County. By that time she had gotten her Masters at Santa Clara University and went out on her own as a psychotherapist. She loved that work, developing even more her passion and skill for helping children and families with a variety of problems. In 2005 Donna realized a dream of returning to Dunsmuir, when she, husband Jon Jeffers and son Eric Burger, bought and renovated the old Oak Tree Inn (Motel?) into what is now the Dunsmuir Lodge. She was the last of the siblings to return to Dunsmuir and was so happy she could spend her last years here. Sadly, although the number of her last years were defined by the cancer diagnosis in 2007, the quality was not. She bravely fought this disease, although she didn't consider herself brave; she just wanted to live as long and as well as she could. She continued her other passions for the piano and knitting and photography, helped nurture the success of the Lodge, and spent time with her family and friends. She was part of a support group for multiple myeloma patients, who drew comfort from each other. Her continued friendship with classmates of 1961 and adjacent years, helped to make the 50th reunion in 2011 very successful. Donna leaves behind her husband of 33 years, Jon Jeffers her son Eric Burger, siblings Carol (Dick Keiser) and Bill (Hazel) Parsons. She was a loved stepmother, grandmother, and great grandmother to Diana Jeffers Williams, Danielle Finley-Haley and Michael Haley, and an aunt to Sheryl Burger. Carol's stepchildren Lori Keiser Usher and Rick Keiser were very grateful for her love and support during their childhoods, and through the births of their children. Donna will be missed by many but our hope is that her kindness and generosity and humor will live on with all those who knew her.