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Donna J. Elliot, age 62, of Olivia, passed away on Thursday afternoon, April 7, at the St. Cloud Hospital surrounded by her loving family.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, April 14, at Unity Christian Reformed Church in Prinsburg. Interment will be in Holland Township Cemetery. Visitation will be at the Unity Christian Reformed Church from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 13, and will continue for one hour prior to the service at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorials to the Central Minnesota Christian School are preferred. Arrangements are with Tri-County Funeral Home in Prinsburg. www.tricountyfuneral.com
LIVESTREAM of SERVICE: https://youtu.be/vElPo2NZYUM
Donna Jean Elliot (Slagter) was born on January 11, 1960, in Willmar, Minnesota to John Henry Slagter and Minnie (Mulder) Slagter of Prinsburg. Donna grew up in the Prinsburg community and graduated from Central Minnesota Christian School in 1978.
Donna attended Willmar Community College and obtained her Associates Degree in Social Work. In September of 1980 she was united in marriage to Jerry Ruplinger. They were blessed with 3 daughters together: Andre`a (Andi), Heather, and Samantha. They were married for 17 years.
In July of 2001, Donna married Dale Elliot and welcomed his son, Michael into her family as one of her own. To Donna, the word “step” didn’t exist, so to her Michael was her son. They made their home in Olivia and were married for 20 wonderful years.
Donna had many passions including photography, reading, antiques, history, and animals. She loved animals especially horses. She taught the girls to ride horse at a young age and that love for animals was shared throughout all of her children and grandchildren.
Donna absolutely loved spending time with her kids and grandkids, celebrating each milestone and accomplishment they achieved. She became an avid sports fan from watching her girls play various sports through the years and became an even bigger fan when her grandkids started to play. No one cheered louder or clapped harder in the stands than her, sometimes to the embarrassment of her kids and grandkids but they loved her even more for it. It was rare for Donna to miss a game, concert or event that was happening in the grandkid’s lives.
Donna’s love for children did not end with her family; she welcomed every child in her life. Her daughters’ friends were always welcomed and loved in their home. Most thought of her as another mom. She continued this tradition with her grandkid’s friends. As she walked down the halls of CMCS, where she worked as a Para-professional, all the kids would greet her as Johnathon/Braelin/Jax’s Grandma instead of Mrs. Elliot or Mrs. E. She beamed with pride each time!
Donna loved to help students learn during her time as a Para-professional at CMCS and even helped teach Minnesota Native American History to her daughters’ classes. Her love of knowledge sent her back to school in 2006 to study Photography at Ridgewater College. She loved taking pictures and this became a great hobby for her.
Being active in her faith was very important to her and she cultivated this in her children as well. Donna was a counselor for Calvinettes/Gems for many years. She also taught Sunday School over the years. As a member of Unity Christian Reformed Church, she was very active in helping with various events and loved the praise and worship time. One of her favorite things was to be in prayer for others and while her list was long, she found comfort and joy in lifting others up. She had a passion for helping others and felt that prayer was the best way to do this. Her children frequently heard “Have you prayed about this?” when they talked a problem or situation out with her. She encouraged others in their faith and wanted to share her love of Jesus with everyone she met. In recent years, she loved going on mission trips with members of her church and her grandson Braelin.
Donna loved to joke around and laugh with her family. Her quick wit, fun-loving nature and story telling ability will be remembered by all. She was able to light up a room with her smile and made so many feel welcomed and loved in her presence.
She is survived by her husband, Dale Elliot of Olivia; daughters, Andi (and Corey) Thorson of Willmar and Heather Ruplinger (and Jeff Kalina) of Lonsdale, and son, Michael (and Mickala) Elliot of Willmar; her grandchildren, Megan Thorson (and fiancé Colin), Kobe Thorson, Shayna Nelson, Johnathon Garvick (and special friend Hailey Sharp), Kaylee Thorson, Braelin Rime, Aubriauna Lemke, Jax Rime, Morgan Kalina, Tayte Tjernagel, and Kolby Kalina. Also surviving are siblings, Mike (and Peggy) Slagter, Linda (and Dale) Hendrickson and Steve (and Patty) Slagter; her “honorary parents”, Hubert and Marilyn Wieberdink and “honorary siblings”, Eric (and Jenna) Wieberdink, Michele Wieberdink and Cassie (and Ryan) Slagter, as well as countless nieces, nephews, and cousins.
She was preceded in death by her parents, John and Minnie Slagter; brother, Fred Slagter and her daughter, Samantha Ruplinger, along with several loving aunts and uncles.
Blessed be the memory of Donna Elliot, a loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister, daughter, aunt, cousin and friend.