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February 28, 2022

Donna Maria Fitzgerald (née Arnold) died peacefully, Monday, Feb. 28, 2022, surrounded by family, at her home outside of Ripley. She was 67. Born Nov. 17, 1954, in Windsor, Donna is survived by her loving husband of almost 48 years, Joe Fitzgerald; as well as her daughters, Danielle (Brian) and Jen (Rob); and she will be met in heaven with open arms by her son, Joey (1991). Predeceased by her mother, Rose; and brother, Keith. She will be eternally missed by her grandchildren, Mitch “Magoo,” Brad “B,” Haley “Missy,” Alexis “Sassy, Danielle and Cassidy. Donna was the youngest in her family, and the only girl. With five older brothers, she learned quickly to “keep up with the boys.” This trait stayed with her throughout life, always fighting for what she felt was right, which allowed her to never back down from a “tough job.” She spent many years working at the local watering hole, Gilley’s Feed Lot, in Kincardine, and then went on to be the go-to person at MacAdam’s Variety Store in Ripley, all while continuing to do what she loved - play in the dirt with the plants at I.C. Greenhouses in Huron-Kinloss Township. Donna had many talents and filled many positions in the community but most importantly, her time and effort in the Ripley-Huron Figure Skating Club and the Ripley Legion were a major part of her community involvement. A whiz with a needle and thread, there are still many skating costumes, altered dresses, hemmed pants, memorial quilts and knitted wares being treasured and worn today. In her retirement, Donna spent a lot of time at markets and craft shows, proudly showing her husband's talents as well as pushing him to try new things, offering her attention to detail and creative flair. She also spent as much time as possible supporting her grandkids in all of the things they loved even if she did tend to get mad if someone ”hurt her babies” on the ice or on the lacrosse floor. She spent countless hours in an arena, learning the rules and covering her eyes when it got too rough. Donna was tenacious in her fight with her medical obstacles right until the end. Through the final stages of her journey, she still continued to laugh, play games, and kept all of us on our toes with her stubbornness and sassy wit. She made an imprint wherever she went, and she will be missed by many extended family members, special friends and the community. A casual come-and-go celebration of her life will be held Saturday, March 5, 2022, from 1-5 p.m., at the Ripley Legion. Private family interment at the Ripley Cemetery in the spring. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Ripley Legion, Branch 440, are greatly appreciated as expressions of sympathy; arrangements entrusted to the MacKenzie and McCreath Funeral Home, Ripley. Condolences on-line at Cry for me if you will, Also smile for me and mine, For my life lived was full, And my light will continue to shine. My love was fierce and loyal, My wish for you is the same, For in my death there’s beauty, Hidden amongst the pain. Please rejoice in today, And fear not for tomorrow, As I am at peace now, Free from pain and sorrow. Weep but for a moment, As I live on through the softest breeze, Laugh and rejoice in my life, As you reflect on the memories.--JB