Once upon a time on September 4, 1941, there was a feisty little girl born in Carlisle, PA to Freda and Howard Rynard. She grew up like a queen doted on by her mother, aunt, and grandmother. At Big Spring High School, she met the boy who would become her knight in shining armor, Ronald George Burkholder. For 57 years of marriage they shared a love for music, theater, travel, and conversation while they lived in Mechanicsburg, PA and later Lancaster, PA.
The adventure continued at Shippensburg University where Donna earned a B.A. in English and later a M.S. in Reading and Literacy. Aside from her studies, most of her time was spent staying up late talking with friends, playing cards, and volunteering with Alpa Sigma, the sorority she helped found.
Donna was an avid teacher of many things throughout her life; English, Reading (Central PA Literacy Council), GED classes (Carlisle H.S.), church youth, interior decorating (Home Interiors), and aging residents (Recreation Dept. Claremont Nursing Center). St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Harrisburg became her second home where she was a devoted member of the flower guild, bookstore, Sunday school, and vestry. Flowers, reading, decorating, and the color red were among her favorite things, evident in her hair, clothes, and car.
Those still living her legacy are her husband, Ronald Burkholder; daughters, Andrea Baker (Brad), Lianne Billoni (Philip); grandchildren, Allison Baker (Kyle, fiancé), Michael Baker (Meredith), Nico Billoni, Dante Billoni; and great grandson, Cohen Baker.
Help us remember and celebrate Donna’s stories at a memorial service on Sat., August 7, 2021 at 11a.m. at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Cathedral, 221 N. Front St., Harrisburg, PA 17101. Friends may greet the family at 10a.m. until the time of the service. A private interment will be held with the family at Indiantown Gap National Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Central PA Literacy Council, 225 Hummel Ave., Lemoyne, PA 17043.
-Cremation Services of Lancaster 717-273-6283