Donna Lavern Sparks

March 6, 1931 – Dec. 3, 2018

Donna Lavern Sparks (Sparkie), 87, died Dec. 3, in her Brentwood home with her daughters by her side.

Born March 6, 1931, in Hopkins, Minnesota, she was the third child of Jessie and Daisy Sparks. Donna’s father was a hardworking farmer and friend to all who crossed his path. Her dear mother was a resourceful, loving and gracious homemaker.

In addition to Montana, Donna lived in many states including Washington, Oregon and Alaska before finally settling down in Northern California. In 1969, she and her husband purchased property in Brentwood, cleared the land and for the next five years, the family – kids included – worked day and night building their dream home.

Throughout her life Donna worked hard, be it as a mother, a state bridge toll collector or fastidious piano student. One of her proudest moments came the day she was able to purchase her very own baby grand. Is it any wonder that much of Donna’s remarkable life can be compared with the Italian word for piano, “pianoforte,” noting her beautiful hands-on ability to live very loudly and yet very softly as well?

Donna felt so very blessed to be the mother of her four children: Susette (Max), Louis (Lynn), Sally (Tom) and Troy (Leslie). In addition, she is survived by her brother, Gary (Penny); 11 grandchildren; and 13 great-grandchildren. Donna was preceded in death by her sisters, Reba and Phyllis; her half-sisters, Helen and Mary Jo; and her beloved grandson, Jason.

A memorial service for Donna will be held at The Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints, 1101 McClarren Road, in Brentwood, Saturday, Dec. 8, at 10 a.m. A reception will follow.

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