Donna Joan Nichols, 80, of Portsmouth, died Sunday, May 15, 2022 at SOMC Hospice. She was born October 14, 1941 in Meadville, PA to the late David Bell and Frances Oakley (Rass).
Donna had worked in several fields, but was most proud of her work as an E.M.T. for Portsmouth and Life Ambulances. Throughout her life, she volunteered in numerous efforts in support of her children, including assistant swim team coach, brownie leader, girl scout leader, and in the cafeteria at Holy Redeemer School. She had a love for writing poetry and short stories, and had several of them published. She enjoyed baking, and taught cake decorating classes.
Donna’s perfect day was sitting by the Ohio River and enjoying a footer and banana malt shake from a local dairy bar. She had a love for adventure and would often take her children in search of fossils when they were young, or would find a hill she could climb to the top for the perfect view of the area she loved so much. She instilled that love for adventure in her children, and her love for nature and all aspects of it.
Donna’s greatest love and dedication was to her family. She was a loving wife to Robert Nichols Jr. until his passing in 1986, and she was also preceded in death by her daughter, Krista Nichols. She is survived by her children; Tawnya Garrett (Mike) of Alexandria, Va, Sabrina Gendreau of Alexandria, Va, Robert Nichols III of Wheelersburg, and Erika Hiles of Wheelersburg. She is also survived by her grandchildren Nicole Burchett (Wally), Kristopher Garrett (Erin), Megan Hiles, and great granddaughter Madelyn Burchett. She is survived by her brother John Oakley (Jennifer) of Portsmouth, and special friend Shirley Conn of New Boston.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be 11:00 A.M. Friday, May 20, 2022 at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Portsmouth, Ohio with Rev. Patrick Watikha officiating. Burial will follow at Memorial Burial Park in Wheelersburg. A visitation for friends and family will be on Thursday from 4:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M. at Melcher Hammer Funeral Home in Portsmouth, where a Recitation of Rosary will be at 6:00 P.M.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be sent to SOMC Hospice of Portsmouth.