Cover photo for Donna Mae Johnson's Obituary
Donna Mae Johnson Profile Photo
1931 Donna 2023

Donna Mae Johnson

August 20, 1931 — December 10, 2023

Pelican Rapids

Donna Mae Johnson, a beloved member of the Pelican Rapids community, passed away on December 10, 2023, at the age of 92 at Sanford Broadway Hospice House, Fargo, ND. She was born on August 20, 1931, to Sigrud and Olga (Ness) Larson in Maddock, North Dakota and her stepmom Gudrun Nyhus was a big part of her life.  Donna grew up in Fergus Falls, Minnesota, where she attended and graduated from Fergus Falls High School.

Throughout her life, Donna held various jobs, including working at Peters Jewelers, Kraning Jeweler, and Fashion Bug in Fergus Falls. However, her true joy and fulfillment came from being a dedicated wife and mother. Donna married Edwin Johnson on September 6, 1952, at North Immanuel Lutheran Church in rural Pelican Rapids. Together, they raised four incredible children.

Donna had a zest for life and found joy in spending time with her family. She loved being surrounded by her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, cherishing every moment with them. Donna was actively involved in her community, participating in the Women's Golf League and the local bowling league. She also enjoyed snowmobiling during the winter months and tending to her beautiful flower garden. Donna displayed her deep faith as a member of North Immanuel Lutheran Church and later at Grace Lutheran Church. She was also a valued member of the American Legion Auxiliary and served as treasuser.

Donna's kind heart and warm smile left a lasting impact on everyone who had the pleasure of knowing her. She will be dearly missed by her children: Steven (Jodie) Johnson of Boring, Oregon, Brenda (Gregg Gietzen) Martinson of West Fargo, North Dakota, Brian (Judy) Johnson of Pelican Rapids, Minnesota; and son-in-law Dennis Pieske of Willmar, Minnesota. She also leaves behind ten adoring grandchildren: Jeremy (Lisa) Johnson, Staci (Matt) Butler, Amanda (Justin) Frahm, Tascha (Brock) Butler, Nathan (Stephanie) Pieske, Casey (Kelley Wilhelmi) Johnson, Zachary (Elizabeth) Strand, Jacob (Jena Smedshammer) Johnson, Mitchell (Ashley Schmidt) Johnson, Christa (Mike Joyce) Johnson; 18 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild. Donna is survived by her brother, Warren Larson, her sister, Connie (Arvid) Honrud, and sisters-in-law: Elenora Tollerud of Apple Valley, MN, Betty Engelstad of Milwaukie, OR, Virgie (Duane) Brandt of Moorhead, MN; and several nieces, nephews, and friends.

Donna was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Edwin Johnson, her daughter Vicki Pieske, her brothers Dean Larson, Don (Eunice) Larson, and Wally (Laura) Larson, and her sister Shirley Provo. She was also preceded in death by her brothers-in-law Arnold Johnson, Ervin (Eileen) Johnson, and John Johnson, as well as her sisters-in-law Marion (Frank) Prim and Jeanette (Irvin) Tollerud.

There will be a recording of the service posted shortly after the memorial service.

A memorial service to celebrate Donna's life and legacy will be held on Saturday, December 16, 2023, at Grace Lutheran Church in Erhard, Minnesota. The visitation will take place from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m., followed by the memorial service at 2:00 p.m. Pastor Brad Soenksen will officiate the ceremony. Donna's final resting place will be at North Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in rural Pelican Rapids, Minnesota, during a private interment in the spring.

In honor of Donna's memory, the family kindly requests that memorial contributions be made to Sanford Fargo Hospice.

Funeral arrangements are entrusted to Larson Funeral Home in Pelican Rapids, Minnesota.

Please keep Donna's family in your thoughts and prayers.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Donna Mae Johnson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, December 16, 2023

12:30 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Memorial Service

Saturday, December 16, 2023

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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