Bettye Gray Donahue

September 8, 1940June 23, 2018

Bettye Gray Donahue (Smith), age 77, passed away peacefully on Saturday, June 23, 2018. She was born in Elizabethtown, North Carolina to Lizzie Lee (Long) and Edgar Earl Smith on September 8, 1940. She grew up with her younger brother Edgar (Eddie) in a loving home. She attended University of North Carolina and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Technology. She met her husband John Donahue at a summer job in Maine, they married and settled in Massachusetts. In Massachusetts, she worked several rewarding jobs and she and John raised two daughters, Susan Elaine and Karen Lynn. Bettye retired in 2000 and moved with John to Cape Cod, MA. They lived there for six years before moving to Michigan to be with her daughters, who had relocated there. She loved being part of her three grandchildren’s lives over the years and loved to spend time with family and friends. She also enjoyed gardening, reading, crafts and traveling. Bettye is preceded in death by her parents; and her cherished granddaughter Sarah L. Witkus. Surviving to carry on her memory is her loving husband John A. Donahue of 54 years; daughters Susan E. Witkus (Michael) and Karen L. Selin (Todd); grandchildren Mitchell T. Selin and Andrew J. Witkus; and brother Edgar E. Smith Jr.; in addition to many nieces, nephews, cousins and dear friends. Bettye’s sweet spirit, giving nature and compassion will be missed greatly by all. A celebration of Bettye’s life will be held on Sunday, July 15th at 3:00 p.m. at Gorsline Runciman Funeral Home of DeWitt, located at 205 E. Washington, Dewitt, MI 48820. The family will receive visitors one hour prior from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. Immediately following Bettye’s celebration of life, there will be refreshments and fellowship at the same location. Bettye asked that in lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in her memory to Great Lakes Caring Hospice Foundation, 900 Cooper Street, Jackson, MI 49202.


  • Memorial Service Sunday, July 15, 2018

Bettye Gray Donahue

have a memory or condolence to add?


July 4, 2018

Dear John,
We remember you and Bettye with great love and admiration from your time on the Cape. You both give so much to the community and are such treasured friends to those you meet. Bettye was a beautiful soul in every way. Our condolences to you and your dear family. May Bettye rest in God's peace and rise in God's glory.
Sincerely, Steve & JoAnn Stolle

Jack and Barbara Hagerman

July 2, 2018

Barbara and I came to know Bettye through John's volunteer work at Sparrow Clinton Hospital. We became friends and enjoyed visiting their home on several occasions. We enjoyed knowing Bettye, she was a pleasure to be around. We have missed seeing her the last couple of times we visited Michigan. Our sincere condolences to her family and her friends.

Nikki Chevalier

June 29, 2018

I had the great fortune of being neighbors with John and Bettye in Cape cod. I was homeschooling 4 children and lived 1500 miles from my family . Bettye was a breathe of fresh air and a great friend to me. She and John took me and the kids boating, one of my best Cape memories. Bettye and I planted and beautified the entrance to our neighborhood together. It was so sad when they moved as she was like a mom to me. I tried to stay in touch and was about to send an email to update her on our family. I absolutely love Bettye and consider her as a special friend. God bless to all family members. You are in my prayers.💖

Diane Shafer

June 27, 2018

I will never forget the first time I put a name with a face to Peoples Church member Bettye Donahue. We were at the DeWitt Ox Roast Festival in (I'm guessing) 2010. It was the summer before my son Daniel's (DJ) 8th Grade year and he was competing in DeWitt's Got Talent. Bettye was sitting right behind us and said, "Do you know who I am? I'm Mitch Selin's Grandma!" She was so sweet and complimentary of our son and family. What a beautiful, elegant lady. She seemed to adore her kids and grand kids. Later I found out she was Andrew Witkus' Grandma too! I looked forward to seeing her at Peoples Church on Sundays. She has been and will continue to be missed. Blessings to the Donahue, Selin and Witkus families. You are all in my heart and prayers.

Diane Shafer