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1948 Donna Lynn Nelson Smith 2023

Donna Lynn Nelson Smith

November 20, 1948 — July 29, 2023

Orem

Donna Lynn Nelson Smith, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, aunt, and friend, passed away Saturday, July 29, 2023. Because she is the epitome of all that is good in life, her passing has left a void for all who loved her.

Donna was born November 20, 1948 in Brigham City, Utah, to Paul Cazier and Reta Richman Nelson. Her childhood in Brigham City was joyful and perfect, for she grew up enveloped in the love of her parents and her best friends, siblings Mike and Diane. She learned to work at an early age, but always injected spirit into everything she did.

Donna earned her bachelor’s degree from Weber State University and a master’s degree from Brigham Young University, both in education. She taught physical education and English in both Utah and Idaho, spending many great years at Orem Junior High School and Slate Canyon Juvenile Detention Center. Even the roughest students adored her, as she always showed them respect and kindness. Before retiring, Donna taught in the education department at Utah Valley University.

Donna was grateful to serve in several callings in the Church, including Relief Society president, Young Women leader, and Sunday School teacher. When she wasn’t doing kind acts of service for others, Donna enjoyed watching movies and television shows, reading science fiction and fantasy books, studying the Gospel, traveling, being in nature, attending Fan-X, playing games, and doing anything with family, especially reunions. She was always the life of the party.

She married Lynn Robert Smith, the love of her life, for time and all eternity on December 19, 1988 in the Provo Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Theirs is a journey of happiness, enduring faith, quick forgiveness, and lasting love. They always took care of each other, right until the day Donna left this mortal life. When they married, Donna inherited three stepsons in Darrell, Daniel, and David. Three years later, Carissa was born to them. They each brought them joy.

Lynn and Donna cultivated a home where the whole family always felt safe and loved and the Gospel of Jesus Christ was taught and lived. Everyone who ever entered their door felt instantly welcomed thanks to sweet hugs from Donna. She reveled in having the children’s friends in the home. Every-day life was wonderful, full of beautiful music and literature, games, movie nights, endless basketball, and Utah Jazz and BYU games. They also went on many grand adventures across the country and internationally. Donna made everything fun.

As daughters-in-law and grandchildren came into the picture, Donna’s capacity to love only grew. She was one of her family’s most vocal cheerleaders, something that only continued when she attended her grandchildren’s many sporting and musical activities. How proud she was of every one of them.

Donna is survived by her husband and forever sweetheart, Lynn; stepsons Darrell (Tanya) Smith of Sandy, UT; Daniel (Mary Sue) Smith of Woods Cross, UT; David (Elizabeth) Smith of Spanish Fork, UT; daughter Carissa (Devin) Smith of Lehi, UT; grandchildren Elayna, Aubrey, Connor, Kadence, Tayah, Garrett, Gavin, Stockton, Sierra, Cambria, Ian, Everett, Zoie, and Xander, all of whom she cherished; brother Michael (Phyllis) Nelson and sister Diane (Richard) Nelson Mantlo; beloved nieces and nephews; and many close friends. They all love her dearly, for she loved them each with all she had.

Donna was preceded in death by her parents, her parents-in-law, Robert and Lola Smith; her sisters-in- law, Mauveen Nelson and Junola Bush; and her brothers-in-law, Charles Bush and Benjamin Blake.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, August 5, 2023 at 11:00 a.m. in the Sunset Heights 8 th Ward chapel of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints located at 500 South 600 West, Orem, UT. A viewing for family and friends will be held Friday evening from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Saturday just prior to the service from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m., at the same church building. Burial will be in the Orem Cemetery after the service. In lieu of flowers, please do something kind for someone else—that’s what Donna would do.

 Condolences for the family may be expressed on this page.  

For those unable to attend the services they can be viewed by clicking HERE

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