Donna Gay Choppe
November 29, 1951-January 12, 2020
Donna passed away in Saskatoon at the age of 68 after a valiant fight with COPD. She is lovingly remembered by her only daughter Nicole Jaeschke (ex son in law Vern), grandchildren Ainsley and Akre; older brother Richard Choppe (Trudy) and beloved niece Christie-Ann; and many close friends. She was predeceased by her father Nicholas Choppe and mother Helen Choppe (Perehudoff).
Donna was born at St. Paul’s Hospital in Saskatoon and grew up on the west side of the city. She attended Howard Coad elementary school and Mount Royal and E.D. Feehan high schools. She left Saskatoon in 1967 and moved to B.C., then on to Alberta, returning to Saskatoon with her daughter Nicole in 1980.
She followed in her father’s footsteps and joined Canada Post in 1981 and retired as a letter carrier in 2016.
Donna had many passions: her granddaughters; her love of dogs; and photography of buildings, wildlife and important life events. After losing her mother Donna focused on researching the history and culture of her Doukhobor ancestors. This passion led to her involvement with the Doukhobor Dugout House where she devoted countless hours at the site and served on the Board of Directors. She was a devoted member of the Saskatoon Prayer Home.
She wrote: “I lived more than most, and less than others, but what a ride. I am happy with my life. . . . the end.”
A celebration of Donna’s life was held Tuesday, January 21, 2020 at 2pm at the Doukhobor Prayer Home in Saskatoon. A family interment will be held in summer at the Doukhobor Dugout House site.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Doukhobor Dugout House National Historic Site of Canada, Box 433, Blaine Lake, SK S0J 0J0.
Spreading of the ashes was held at Doukhobor Dugout House on June 20, 2020 with family and the Elders who worked with her in attendance to bring Donna home. Everyone received a purple mask, Donna's favourite muffin and drink, and a rose to place at Oospenie spring.
If you prefer to donate by cheque, please send to:
Doukhobor Dugout House
Blaine Lake SK S0J 0J0
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If you wish to use your donation as admission to our 2021 Theme Day, please print a copy of the receipt you will receive from PayPal, and bring it and one piece of ID with you to present at the gate. We look forward to seeing you next year!
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Thank you for your support.
Remembering Donna and carrying on her work and passion
Carrying on Donna's project
Donna spent 17 years with the Doukhobor Dugout House as a volunteer and Director of the non-profit organization.
Thoughout the years she corresponding with many elders and historians so she could share our history and heritage with visitors.
Donna spent many hours dedicated to educating others and sharing her knowledge for others to enjoy.
Along the way Donna fell in love with the idea of a having a Prayer Home on the site, so she could share and bring to us the beliefs and passion of her ancestors.
She organized the building like a museum. It looks amazing, but it badly needs repairs for a leaking roof which created damage inside.
She talked to contractors and found that the project would need almost $7,000 to complete. She did apply for and receive some funding from several organizations, but the goal was not reached before her passing.
You to can help reach the goal. While Donna's passing is a huge loss, her spirit lives on in the Prayer Home.