Donna Lou Bland Williams

August 25, 1943January 3, 2021

Donna Lou Bland Williams, age 77, of Paragould, Arkansas, passed away on January 3, 2021, in Little Rock, Arkansas. Born on August 25, 1943, Donna was the daughter of the late Winifred Fairfax Landrum Bland and Herbert Francis Bland, Jr., and the wife of the late Reverend Powell Gladstone (Bill) Williams II. Donna is survived by her daughters, Kathy Williams Kostopulos and Nancy Williams White; her grandchildren, Madison, Mahlon, Garrett, Sam, and Kate; and her siblings, Herbert Francis Bland III, John Bland, and Denise Bland Bednar, and their families. She also leaves a host of beloved cousins, extended family members, an exchange family in Brazil, and many cherished friends.

Donna graduated from Paragould High School in 1961 and attended Hendrix College where she graduated with a physical education degree in 1965. She continued her studies at Emory University where she received a master’s degree in education. She first taught at Druid Hills High School in Atlanta, Georgia, where she coached the girls’ basketball team. She later went on to teach music in elementary schools throughout northeast and southeast Arkansas.

Donna was active in the United Methodist Church and United Methodist Women, volunteered in numerous church and school activities, and spent time with her grandchildren, who knew her as Nonna. Throughout her life, Donna remained passionate about music education for children. She directed children’s choirs, led Girl Scout troops, composed her own music, and wrote children’s plays. Her kind, generous spirit touched everyone who knew her.

Donna’s family wishes to express their heartfelt thanks to the staff at The Green House Cottages of Poplar Grove in Little Rock for their compassionate care.

A service celebrating Donna’s life will be held at Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church in Little Rock once social-distancing restrictions have been lifted and we can safely gather in person. Details will be published at that time. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be sent to a local United Methodist Church, the Dan Ross Memorial Scholarship at Arkansas State University, or a charitable organization of one’s choice.


  • United Methodist Church
  • Dan Ross Memorial Scholarship


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


Donna Lou Bland Williams

have a memory or condolence to add?

Kim Hoffman

January 10, 2021

I was privileged to be student in Mrs. Raymond's accounting class
at Hendrix during my junior year and met Donna when she came
back to Hendrix to take the class. We sat together during class and
sometimes studied together. It was a joy to know her. Her daughters were young then and Rev. Williams was a pastor at First
Methodist in Conway. I have always remembered her as a kind
and loving friend. I lost touch with her after they moved but I
have appreciated her friendship and help in accounting. I will be
thinking of you and praying for your family.

Sheila Smith

January 8, 2021

I had the privilege to know and work with Donna in the Hamburg School District. She was an extremely kind , joyful, and dear person . Her desire for children to experience the gift of music was foremost in her career as an educator.
May her family be comforted with God’s love , presence, and peace.

Kay Caffey

January 7, 2021

Donna was such a sweet person. Gordon and I were so thrilled when Donna and Bill came to Blytheville and sad when they left. Now they are together again. We send prays to all the family.

Jeff Branch

January 6, 2021

I'm sorry to hear of Donna passing. Our loss is Heavens gain, where I'm sure she's leading the choir. All the Bland family are in my thoughts and prayers. I miss seeing her at Kiwanis!

Kathy Stafford

January 6, 2021

Donna was a wonderful part of my family’s life especially my children as she worked in First United Methodist Church in Newport. Her work in music and children and youth work added so much to our lives. Bill was also an important part of our church and our life. We are sorry for your loss and we are sending prayers to Kathy and Nancy and families and also her brothers my husband Penn went to college with John

Charles Rasberry

January 6, 2021

What sadness it brings to learn of the passing of my dear friend, Donna Bland Williams. She and her pastor husband, Bill, were such an important part of my life -- and the lives of so many others!
My deepest sympathy to Kathy and Nancy and all the other members of Donna's family.

Charles Rasberry

Steve Wessell

January 6, 2021

I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Donna. I know she was a good person and will be missed by all who new her. My sympathy to all of her family members.

Charles Brinkley

January 5, 2021

So many good memories! I loved visiting with your parents. I can still remember her voice and smile that welcomed me. So sorry for your loss!

Ken Babcock

January 5, 2021

I knew Donna my entire life. During our childhood we were neighbors and we graduated from Paragould High School and Hendrix College together. Her late husband, Bill and I were friends during our days at Hendrix and our paths crossed a few times after that. Donna was one of the kindest and caring people I ever knew. My heart goes out to Herb, John and Denise and the entire Bland/Williams Clan. I hope knowing that many of us share the burden of your loss lightens your load during these sad times. Just know beyond doubt that God's world is brighter with Donna's presence. Ken Babcock

Kendra Galloway

January 5, 2021

Mrs. Williams was dearly love at Wilmot Elementary School. She will be truly missed.