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Pat H. Foley & Company

1200 West 34th Street, Houston, TX

OBITUARY

Donna Jean Danna

August 25, 1954August 27, 2020

Donna Jean Danna nee Rouse, a woman who was instrumental in the education, care and tooth extraction of thousands of children, died August 27th. She was born on August 25, 1954 in Pasadena, Texas. Donna was 66.

She began working with students with intellectual disabilities when she was in high school at Sam Rayburn, where she graduated in 1972. That same year, she married her sweetheart Joe Danna and was a proud law enforcement wife, they had two daughters. She went on to co-found, with her cousin-in-law Mary Moratto, the first after-school program at St. Ambrose Catholic School and spent decades as a kindergarten assistant at several schools including Briargrove Elementary, St. Rose of Lima and St. Michael. She was most fulfilled when she was surrounded by children.

In 2008, she and Joe were honored to be called to step in as guardians of two month old Kailey Rose, eventually becoming adoptive and loving parents starting a new chapter that would enrich the lives of the entire Danna family.

Next to raising her daughters and working with children, her greatest passion in life was pulling their teeth. Well, that and having the greenest thumb in all of Jersey Village. But back to the teeth. There wasn’t a loose tooth she didn’t want to extract. She found such satisfaction in the whole process; pulling a loose tooth, giving children their tooth in a tiny plastic treasure chest, even wearing a Tooth Fairy Costume.

“All kids loved her, our house was a revolving door of friends. She made everyone feel like they were her favorite, no matter what age. She became a second mom to so many of our friends,” her daughter Jill said.

When her older daughters were school-aged, she happily welcomed Forest Pines neighborhood kids into her home, offering a snack from the bucket on top of fridge, a Hot Pocket, a Clearly Canadian and turned on Kids Incorporated. In 2003, the Danna family relocated to Jersey Village, where friends and family dubbed her house The Danna Hotel, a place where you could check out, but never truly leave.

“Mom was a proud honorary mother to many of my friends who have relocated to Houston from out of state—insisting they join us for Holidays, helping them move out of houses, even rescuing them from a flat tire on the side of the road,” said her daughter, Monica.

But before Mrs. Danna is canonized for all of her good deeds with children, her friends want it known that she was irreverent. Fun. Hilarious. The kind of friend that makes you laugh until you cry. The kind of friend that you could trust with your secrets and shenanigans.

She went on an annual trip with the Getaway Girls, who were a group of mothers from St. Rose of Lima with whom she stayed friends with for decades. Their favorite destination being Whispering Pines Ranch in Grapeland, Texas, where at their latest trip earlier this year, they poured wet cement and each Girl put their hands in it for posterity.

She never went to bed without reading a book. An avid reader, she couldn’t wait for the paperback editions, she had to have the newly-released hardback editions. It’s possible she single-handedly kept Barnes and Noble in business all these years between her book and puzzle buying. You could always find a puzzle in progress on her dining room table, a hobby she passed down to grandsons Beau and River.

She and her lifelong best friend, Pam Allen, met on Suiter Way in Pasadena, Texas when they were 2 years old. God made sure they had one last hoorah together. The week before Mrs. Danna’s death, Pam stayed at The Danna Hotel the night before an appointment in Houston, likely redecorating one of the rooms at the Danna house. Mrs. Danna’s daughter Monica, son-in-law and grandson stayed with her in preparation of Hurricane Laura, where their beloved “DD” spent her last perfect day on earth, swimming, doing a puzzle, and playing with her grandson.

Though her death was sudden, the end of her life was what everyone hopes for…surrounded by family and friends at home.

She is preceded in death by her parents Earl and Jean Rouse, and little sister Sandra who died at age 4. She is survived by her husband of 48 years, Joe Danna and her daughters Kailey Danna, 12; Monica Danna, 41, her husband Joey Garcia, their son River Garcia, 4; Jill King, 38, her husband Matt, and their sons Matthew, 21, Jacob, 16 and Beau, 7; as well as her brothers and their families; Michael, Rose and Deana Grey and her wife, Mattison; and Stephen, Celeste and Craig Rouse.

Her family is planning a private, family-only liturgy service at their parish church. In addition, details will follow for a Celebration of Donna’s Life later in 2020, where the family will welcome her many friends and extended family to celebrate her incredible life. The Danna family requests donations to the newly-formed Donna Danna Student Scholarship Fund, which will annually benefit a St. Ambrose School family in need in lieu of food and flowers. Donations can be made to the fund at www.donnadannastudentfund.org or directly to St. Ambrose School in Houston, TX.

Services

No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

Memories

Donna Jean Danna

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Leo Campos

September 9, 2020

My dearest condolences for you and your family I know this is so hard, I hope God gives you more strength day by day. I never thought this was going to happen to her she looked with a full live , I remember when I went to replaced there pool motor she was sitting outside and she gave me two bottles of water, she was so sweet every time I went there. Dona we will always remember you like a very nice and sweet person Rest In Peace.

Sincerely, Leo and Family.

Johnny Gibbs

September 7, 2020

I’ve known the Danna family over 20 years. I first met Joe when I was doing electrical work at his house and we soon became friends. Every time I would visit, Donna made me feel right at home and spoiled me with cold drinks and food. She always had a big smile on her face and made me feel like I was part of the family. Donna will be missed!

Johnny Ray Gibbs

Barbara McMahan-Cage

September 4, 2020

My heart ❤️ is saddened at the passing of our Dearest Donna Danna. She was a true giver! Donna was always there to share, listen and give kind advice. As a inspiration to all women, she especially related to all mothers and all children. God has now welcomed her into His Kingdom of Heaven. I am sure she sits very near the patron saints of mother’s. She will always be in my heart ❤️ and on my mind. I send my condolences to Joe, Monica, Jill, Kailey and family. My thoughts and prayers are with you. May Donna Rest In Peace!

Stephanie Thompson

September 3, 2020

Dear sweet Donna, our family is so distraught and saddened over your passing. We had such wonderful childhood memories growing up together. The last several years when u and I would meet for our monthly lunch dates was such a joy to me. I will love u and miss u forever. I know that Aunt Jean and Uncle Earl and Sandy met u in heaven with open arms . May Joe and Monica , Jill and Kayleiy find peace and strength to go on. I will pray for your family daily. My prayers also go out to my sweet cousins Steve and Mike . I love u, Stephanie

Lia Lisa Saling

September 3, 2020

Dear Joe and family,

Please accept our sincerest condolences during this difficult time. We never knew Donna, but from reading about her life we know she was an amazing person who was very loved.

Please be assured of our prayers for you and your family to be comforted and find peace.

With sympathy,

Thomas and Lia Lisa Saling

Pete Ogg

September 3, 2020

I never had the pleasure of knowing Donna personally. She sounds like the dearest lady anyone could know. I am blessed to have met her daughters and to know her loving husband. I truly believe Donna and I would have been the best of friends and found so much fun & laughter in life. Donna, rest easy now and one day we'll get together in Heaven and make up for lost laughs. Much love.
"Pete" Ogg

Texas Tim Webb

September 3, 2020

Joe, I am shocked and upset about the sad news. So sorry to hear of your wife's passing. I have an idea that will earn some money for her School Scholarship .Luv, Texas Tim Webb
PS. I also wrote a Theme Song for Law Enforcement. I think it can get you some good Political Publicity.

Edison Valderrama

September 2, 2020

To the Danna Family..my deepest condolences..To my friend JoJo of many many years,Im sorry youre going through this feeling...this hurt this pain.Only time will help you gather strength to heel.I know it won't be easy,I went through this 13yrs ago with my Olga, 😪. Jo..... Donna will always be by your side ...ALWAYS! Believe me when I say this to you.. .They will ALWAYS watch over us.Take of yourself my friend.YOU GOT THIS.....Edison.

Valerie Cotrone Fonseca

September 2, 2020

Jill,
Although I met you mother briefly , her laughter and light shined so bright. I knew instantly where you inherited your grace and charm. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Christie Crawford

September 2, 2020

Joe , Daughters and Family
Our deepest condolences to you and your extended family. God welcomed Donna into his kingdom with a huge hug, a good book and told her, “Well done my faithful servant”. She will soar above you and be with you with you least expect it. God Bless you all and may his peace comfort you during these difficult days ahead. Our Best,, Dale and Christie Crawford

FROM THE FAMILY

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