Karen Donahue

Karen M. Donahue, 74, of New Albin died Sunday, June 28, 2020 at her home surrounded by her loving family. Funeral services were held Thursday, July 2 at the New Albin Community Center in New Albin with Rev. Msgr. Cletus Hawes officiating. Burial was at Mt. Hope Cemetery, rural New Albin. Condolences can be sent to Larry Donahue at 128 Third Street SE, New Albin, IA 52160.

Karen Marie Donahue was born February 6, 1946 in Spring Grove, MN, the daughter of Kenneth and Lyla (Solberg) Smith. She was baptized and confirmed at Trinity Lutheran Church in Spring Grove and grew up in Waukon, where she attended school and after which went to work at the Allamakee County Care Facility.

January 8, 1966, Karen married Lawrence James Donahue at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in New Albin. Due to Larry’s job, the couple moved to Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN and Hannibal, MO before returning home to New Albin in 1972. Karen drove school bus for the Eastern Allamakee Community School District and for the New Albin summer recreation program. She became a huge Kee High baseball fan and loved driving the team to their games and continued going to their events after she retired in 2008.

She was a member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church. Karen loved spending time with family, especially her grandsons. Karen also took many girls’ weekends and trips with her siblings to places like Rochester, MN for Christmas shopping, Graceland, Alaska and Oklahoma; with Larry, Karen liked camping and pontooning. Since she was a great cook, she did some catering with her sister, Linda, and was known for her delicious potato salad and upside down cheesecake.

Karen was a pretty competitive gal who “didn’t come to lose” and liked playing cards, going to casinos, and doing crossword and sudoko puzzles. She also enjoyed cross stitching, ceramics, reading Janet Evanovich novels and watching her shows: I Love Lucy, Dancing with the Stars and NCIS.

Karen is survived by her husband, Larry, of New Albin; her five children: Patty (John) Donahue, Shelly (Mike) Gallagher and Colleen (Curtis) Donahue, all of New Albin, Erin (Mike) Donahue of Mindoro, WI and Mary (Mike) Mitchell of New Albin; two grandsons, Jared Donahue and Michael “Mikey” Mitchell; a sister, Sue Freese of Waukon; four brothers: Dennis (Cindy) Smith of Monona, and Randy (Pam) Smith, Fred (Geralyn) Smith and Greg (Kristie) Smith, all of Waukon; a sister-in-law, Theresa Smith of Decorah; and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents; an infant twin brother and sister; two brothers, Ronald and Roderick Smith; two sisters, Linda Sires and Patty Gilman; a nephew, Brent Smith; a brother-in-law, Roger Freese; and a sister-in-law, Marguerite “Mimi” Donahue.

Casketbearers were Dennis, Randy, Fred and Greg Smith, Jared Donahue, Mike Mitchell, Andrew Sires and Troy Nierling. Online condolences may be left at www.martinfunerals.com.

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