Donna Rae (Wix) Gardner, 79, of Evansville, IN, was greeted by her Creator, the Lord and Savior of her life, on April 19, 2021 peacefully, at her home.
Donna was born in Evansville, IN, to her parents, Robert and Harriet “Peggy” (Crowe) Wix, whom she loved dearly. From an early age, Donna had a special spunk about her, which only grew throughout her lifetime. As a child, she enjoyed dancing and was never afraid to pull a prank here and there, especially at school. While she would admit school was never her favorite place to be, she was quite the social butterfly, and she deeply cherished the friendships she made and carried them with her for many years. Once you were Donna’s friend, you were her friend for life. She was a 1959 graduate of Bosse High School and also attended Tri-State Beauty College to obtain her beautician’s license. She became a hairdresser and married the love of her life, Wayne Gardner in 1960. They went on to have four children and Donna was proud to stay home and raise her children. Her kids kept her on her toes, as they all inherited her spunky spirit, but she loved every minute. Once her kids were raised, Donna became a Bridal Consultant for Marco Bridal, where she once again, formed many friendships and was able to share her knack for style with those she served.
Donna was preceded in death by her parents and two sons, Derek Gardner, at age 29 and Eric Gardner, as an infant. Although her world was shaken by these losses, she always knew how much the Lord had blessed her with the loving family she was given. Donna is survived by her loving husband, of 60 years, Hershel (Wayne) Gardner; her son, Trent Gardner and his wife, Carol; her daughter, Tisha McDaniel, and her husband, Stevie, Jr., grandchildren; Jourdan Boberg and her husband, Chase, Taylor Gardner, Cru McDaniel, Kelsey Gardner, great-granddaughter, Sullivan Boberg and Baby Boberg, due in June; one sister-in-law, Pam (Gardner) Clayton, her husband, Bob, and their two sons Corey (Danielle) and Brook (Allison), and two great nephews, Evan and Cody. Donna and Wayne, like any couple after more than sixty years, loved giving each other a hard time but were devoted to caring for one another and the family they created together. They enjoyed traveling with family, friends, and other members of the H.O.G. Club. To Donna, family was everything, she always put them first and made sure they knew how much she loved them. Donna loved the spouses of her children and granddaughter, as if they were her own and that love was reciprocated by each of them. Her children made her so proud and the happiness they brought her by blessing them with her grandchildren was unmatched. They were her pride and joy, the lights of her life. She cared for them as they grew from babies, to adults, and began building their own lives. She took pride in each of their accomplishments and felt God truly blessed her when she was given her first great-grandchild, and she was anxiously awaiting the arrival of her second one in June. Donna’s grandchildren gave her the name “Mormee” and soon enough she became “Mormee” to everyone they introduced her to. All of her children and grandchildren’s friends loved being around her and felt loved by her. She was known for hosting pool parties, cooking far too much food, and never letting you leave her house hungry. Donna had a great love for animals and adored the companionship of her many dogs, throughout her life. She enjoyed meeting friends and family for meals, all day shopping adventures, hours of phone conversations, and loved rearranging and redecorating her home while Wayne was away on trips or at work. Donna left her mark on this world and will be dearly missed by all who loved her, but she looked forward to the days of being reunited with her parents, sons, and many other family members and friends.
A Celebration of Life and Legacy will be held at 7:00 p.m., Friday, April 23, 2021, at Boone Funeral Home East Chapel - A Family Traditional Funeral Home, 5330 Washington Avenue with Brother Tim Doss officiating. A Live Stream will be available beginning twenty minutes prior to the service time. Please visit www.boonefuneralhome.net, select your loved one’s obituary, scroll to the bottom of the page, and click Live Stream. There will be a private burial at a later time.
Friends may visit from 3:00 p.m. until time of Celebration of Life Friday, April 23, 2021, at Boone Funeral Home East Chapel. Memorial Contributions may be made to: Shriners Hospital at 4400 Clayton Avenue, St. Louis, MO, 63110.
Condolences may be made to the family online at www.boonefuneralhome.net
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Donna Gardner, please visit our floral store.