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Donna Defries

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In Memory of Donna Marie Defries

We are sad to announce the sudden passing of Donna Defries (nee Russell), at home in Ottawa, Ont., on June 22, 2021 at the age of 58. Cherished wife for 30 years of Craig and loving mother of Alex (Claire), Charlotte and Aislinn. Beloved sister of Linda Price (Ross) and Glenn Russell (Sherrie). Predeceased by parents Douglas and Carole. Daughter-in-law of June Defries and the late Robert, and sister-in-law to Kathryn Laskaris (Sam). Loving aunt to Steven Price, Lindsay Coulson, Hayley Buchholz and Brittany Keith; Michael and Adam Laskaris;and Arielle Russell. Great-aunt to Willa, Jacob, Sutton, Chase and Mackenzie. Donna grew up in Pointe-Claire, Que. and moved to Scarborough as a teenager. After attending nursing school, she worked several years at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto in the NICU ward. She also spent time as a nurse in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in the NICU at the King Fahad Hospital. Upon moving to Ottawa, she worked at the NICU at CHEO, and The Ottawa Hospital (General and Civic). While raising three children, she attended the University of Ottawa, graduating with a BScN and embarked on a new career: working for many years with Ottawa Public Health, in the area of communicable diseases. We will always remember Donna’s unflappable good humour, love of family, bountiful vegetable garden, fiery discussions of current events, adventurous spirit and delicious meals. She travelled widely from a young age and instilled that love of travel in her children. But what she enjoyed most was to spend time with family and friends, whether at home in Ottawa, overseas, North Carolina, Toronto or at Lake Simcoe. At your next happy hour, raise a glass to Donna. She will be greatly missed.

A private service will be held in Ottawa. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Operation Smile (operationsmile.ca) or a charity of your choice.

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