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Donna J. Sager

Sep. 28, 1931 - Aug. 1, 2018

Date of Service: Aug. 10, 2018

BURLEY – Donna Jean Sager, an 86-year-old resident of Burley, died Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2018, at her home.

Donna was the third daughter born to Claude and Tina Bohon Chugg of Acequia, Idaho. She spent her youth growing up on the family farm with her five siblings, Jack, Alene, Naomi, Dan, and Fred. She attended the Acequia School and graduated from Rupert High School in 1949.
She met Merle Sager, who became the love of her life, on the Burley waterfront where he took her and her sister, Naomi, for a boat ride; promptly soaking them both. Merle and Donna were married March 19, 1954, at the Burley First Christian Church and they made their home in Burley. They were married 64 years and raised two children, Sondra Klink (John) of Burley, and Frank Sager (Linda) of Kingston, Washington.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Claude and Tina Chugg; along with her brothers and sisters. She is survived by her husband, Merle; their two children, Sondra and Frank; granddaughters, Rosa and Ellen; step-grandson, Jeffrey Seaman (Naomi) of Monroe, Washington; and three step-great-grandchildren, Kyle, Luke and Tayla Seaman.

Donna had a great love of the outdoors, going on many adventures with her family. In her younger days, it was fishing on the Snake River with her family, camping, and riding trail bikes in the south hills and Sawtooth mountains. Later, there were many fishing trips to Vancouver Island, Canada, with Merle and granddaughter, Rosa. Additionally, there were many trips with Merle and Rosa, visiting places of history throughout the United States; travels to Alaska by RV; and a final trip to Napa Valley Wine Country – the highlight of which was dinner on the wine train with Merle, Frank and Linda. Of note, her nephew, John Orvik, was amazed how she had a way of showing up the boys with being a better shot in hunting; she always came home with her limit on sage grouse or pheasants.

Donna was a loving mother. She kept her son, Frank, alive through all his allergies, was there to clean cuts and scrapes, and comfort us when we were sad; she truly helped us when needed. She was compassionate, respectful, loving and concerned about the health and well-being of family and friends. She honored her deceased family by placing flowers on local graves every Memorial Day. Her hands were always busy and ready to help. Donna appreciated garden-to-table vegetables and flower gardens for beauty. She was a prayer warrior, calling local people to set up prayer vigils for others in need. She was generous and loved sharing experiences with others – such as travel tours. She was a faithful and joyful Sister-in-Christ and in women’s bible studies. She was inclusive with handwritten letters to her step-great-grandchildren in cursive (longhand) – and they loved it.

She was an active member of the First United Methodist Church. She kept in touch with her high school friends the “49ers.” and was a member of the Model-A car club. Later in life, she had health issues, but made the decision not to be plugged into a machine; she instead, decided to enjoy each day to the fullest – which she did. On Wednesday, Aug. 1, Sondra picked up her mom and dad and took them to the Minidoka County Fair with granddaughters, Rosa and Ellen. She enjoyed the flower and gardening exhibits and seeing the photos, drawings, and floral arrangements her granddaughters had entered. She was so pleased to see the rosette on the Mr. Lincoln entry. They spent the day enjoying all there was to see; eating hamburgers with Sondra, Merle and her granddaughters, and checking out the awards Rosa and Ellen had earned. That evening, while enjoying TV with Merle, she got up to check on the corn she was cooking. She told Merle she was blacking out; he caught her as she was falling, and held her as the aneurysm burst, sending her home to be with the Lord.

Ellen saw a bright light as her grandmother went to be with the Lord. Donna may be gone, but she is not forgotten.

A service of remembrance will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Aug. 10, at the United Methodist Church, 450 E. 27th St., in Burley, with the Rev. Kenneth L. Haftorson officiating.

Arrangements are in the care of Rasmussen Funeral Home of Burley.