This week marks the 67th anniversary of the birth of my sister-in-law, Donna Timmerman Belhumeur. She was born Donna Jeanne on 14 July 1952 in Madison, Wisconsin. Her parents, Don and Jeanne Timmerman, enjoyed being near Jeanne’s parents who lived in nearby Portage. The family would spend many a weekend there or out at the family summer home on Swan Lake. Donna and her siblings attended grammar school in Madison. In 1963, a new work opportunity enticed the the family to move across country to Newark, California.
Donna spent the next several years in the Bay Area. She married Phil Belhumeur on 9 Apr 1978 in Santa Clara, CA. They soon relocated to Glendale, AZ, where they hoped to settle down and start a family. Donna and Phil and their three children transferred to Tuscon, AZ, remaining there until Phil’s business closed up his location. They then took another transfer to Bakersfield, CA, where the kids attended high school.
Donna had a “go big or go home” personality, and really got into her work or hobbies. Over the years, she enthusiastically engaged in many groups and activities, including church and 4H. She enjoyed showing rabbits and horses, and ran a morning paper route. For a time she operated a kiosk in a local mall selling charm bracelets and Beanie Babies. In October of 2000, Donna and Phil’s oldest son Tim was killed in an alcohol related traffic incident. She spent the rest of her time in Bakersfield advocating against drunk driving.
After their other children relocated, the Belhumeurs downsized and moved north to Hillsboro, Oregon in 2006. Donna went to work at the Wells Fargo call center there, and planned to work there until retirement. Unfortunately, in January of 2012, Donna was diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer. She passed away at her home on 30 Aug 2012, shortly after her 60th birthday. We’re missing out on all the fun we could have had with her, especially since we moved to her neighborhood in 2014.
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