Obituary of Donna Lee Rowe
It is with great sadness we announce the loss of our beloved Mother, Grandmother, Sister, Aunt and Friend, Donna Lee Rowe, 70, of Northside East Bay, Nova Scotia. She passed away on January 2nd, 2024, surrounded by family at Hospice Cape Breton, Sydney.
Donna was born in Sydney, Nova Scotia, to Walter and Mary Burke on November 10th, 1953. Donna lived for her grandchildren who gave her so much pride and joy; watching hockey games with her grandson Denzel, tea parties with her granddaughter Mary-Louise, and playing pickle ball with regular visits to their favorite candy store with her grandson Jacob. The majority of her retirement years were devoted to being a grandmother; it was her greatest achievement.
Donna began her career journey as secretary at Riverview High School, which set in motion a progression to various roles at the Cape Breton Regional School Board, eventually retiring as Director of HR at the Halifax Regional School Board. Donna had a sense of fulfillment from her career accomplishments; but more importantly, she cherished the many life-long friends she made throughout her career.
When she wasn’t spending time with her grandchildren, she enjoyed the company of her friends; sewing, playing pickle ball, exploring, and shopping. Donna made friends anywhere she went; she loved a good conversation and could strike up interesting conversations with complete strangers. Many of those strangers began as new neighbors, who grew to become the most wonderful friends over the years.
Donna cherished her family circle of siblings as well as all of her nieces and nephews. Donna always took the lead planning family events from Sisters weekends, to family and friend celebrations, she took great pleasure in organizing a memorable gathering. Donna was the first call nieces and nephews would make when looking for career advice. She loved sharing her knowledge and experience in Human Resources and enjoyed the many conversations she had over the years connecting with her nieces and nephews.
Donna is survived by her daughter, Janine Gallant; step-son, Jason (Kim) Rowe; and stepdaughter, Jillian Rowe (Jeff Green); brother, Robert (Kathy) Burke; twin sister Bonnie (Len) Verhaeghe; sisters Marie (Wendell) Aucoin, Marlene (Charlie) Bond, Brenda (Frank) Frison, and Gail (Leo) McDonnell; brothers-in-law, Donald Rowe and Gerard (Mary) Rowe, and sister-in-law Noreen (Kevin) Rowe. Her most treasured people, her grandchildren, Denzel, and Mary-Louise (Janine), and Jacob (Jillian).
Donna was predeceased by her father and mother, Walter and Mary Burke; husband, Gareth Rowe; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Catherine and Tony White; brother-in-law, Kevin Rowe; sister-in-law, Joanne Rowe (Donald) and nephew, Kevin Rowe.
The family wishes to extend their gratitude to Dr. Don Rowe and his staff at the Chemotherapy Clinic, Colchester East Hants Health Centre; the VON and Palliative Care teams in Municipality of East Hants and Cape Breton County; as well as all the staff and volunteers at Sydney Hospice.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the care and direction of T.J. Tracey Cremation & Burial Specialists, 6 Churchill Drive, Sydney, N.S., 902-539-7175. Visitation and memorial service to celebrate the life of Donna Rowe will be held at the funeral home on January 15th, 2024, at 1 pm. A gathering of family and friends will take place from 12 pm to 1 pm, with the memorial service, officiated by Father Anthony O’Connor of St Mary’s Parish, East Bay, to follow at 1 pm. Interment will take place at Forest Haven Memorial Gardens, Sydney, at a later date. For those unable to attend, the service will be livestreamed and can be viewed by visiting T.J. Tracey Facebook page.
Donations in memory of Donna may be made to Hospice Cape Breton or a charity close to your heart.
Words of condolence may be made to the family by visiting www.tjtracey.com.