Donna Morrisette, of Prior Lake, passed away on May 4, 2023 at the age of 91. Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday, May 8, 2023 at 10:30 AM with visitation one-hour prior at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Savage. Donna will be laid to rest with her beloved husband, Rodney, at Fort Snelling National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred and will be distributed in Donna’s memory to some of her favorite charities.
On October 4, 1931, Donna Marie Rieckman was born to parents, Herman and Emma (Bredy) Rieckman. She was the youngest of three growing up in Morris. As a girl she enjoyed taking piano lessons provided by her aunt Marie. Donna was a great student and graduated high school as co-valedictorian.
Following high school, she enrolled at Winona State College where she met the love of her life, Rod Morrisette. The bulk of their courtship was long-distance as Rod was deployed overseas with the Air Force. The two were married within a week of Rod’s honorable discharge. They exchanged wedding vows on March 20, 1954 at St. Mark’s Catholic Church in St. Paul. Their marriage was blessed with many happy years and three beautiful daughters.
Rod and Donna settled in the Savage/Prior Lake area to raise their family. They eventually moved to their dream home on Prior Lake. As a family, they enjoyed water skiing, boating, sitting on the deck and just being at the lake. There was always an open-door policy for extended family, neighbors and friends to visit and enjoy the wonderful lake activities with them. They especially loved teaching everyone who came to water ski, even their parish priest, Fr. Roedel! Donna was like a second mom to all the neighborhood kids. It was always a fun surprise when someone would pull up to the dock. Donna was always ready to entertain friends and family at a moment’s notice.
Since Rod was away from home for his work as a pilot, Donna was responsible for keeping up the house; and she could do it all. Even into her 90’s she still shoveled the driveway and mowed her own lawn. Donna was an excellent homemaker and set a wonderful example for her daughters. She was so proud that they were independent and self-sufficient women who all earned a college degree.
Later in life, Donna and Rod enjoyed becoming grandparents. They loved having the grandkids out to the lake for fun summer days, and of course, teaching them to water-ski! More recently, one of Donna’s greatest enjoyments was visits from her great grand-son, Holden. Her beautiful eyes lit with joy when he was around. Rod and Donna wintered in Florida and made many wonderful friends over the years. They took daily walks around Cleary Lake (as long as it wasn’t too cold for the dogs). Donna was an avid Bridge player and enjoyed playing with her special groups of women for many decades. Although they had many hobbies and interests, Rod and Donna were happiest enjoying a quiet day on the lake. They loved sitting out on the deck taking in all the nature that surrounded them.
Donna was a very strong woman. She had a strong faith and was a thoughtful and caring mom and woman. Donna was known for her nurturing heart and had a knack for connecting with anyone in-need of a little extra love. She will be deeply missed and remembered always by her loving family.
She is survived by her daughters, Shellie Okon, Jill (Tom) Raines, Chris (Greg) Barnard; grandchildren, Stephanie Raines, T.J. Raines, Lily Raines, Natalie (Steve) Millanes, Michael Barnard, Daniel (Hannah) Barnard; and great-grandson, Holden Barnard.
Donna was greeted in Heaven by her husband, Rodney “Rod” Morrisette; parents: Herman & Emma Rieckman; siblings: Robert (Peggy) Rieckman and Dorothy (Gordy) Branes; son-in-law, Stan Okon; special aunt, Marie Bredy.Print Obituary & Condolences