Barbara D. McFadden Aug. 5, 1960 - May 21, 2014 GRANGER - Barbara Donchetz McFadden, 53, passed away Wednesday at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center surrounded by her loving family. Barb was born on August 5, 1960, to the late John Frank and Marie Helen (Nemeth) Donchetz in South Bend, and was a lifetime area resident. She was a 1978 graduate of St. Joseph High School and attended Butler University and Indiana University South Bend. She had worked as a Technical Director at WNDU-TV. Barb was a member of St. Pius X Catholic Church. On April 30, 1988, in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart on the campus of the University of Notre Dame, she married her high school sweetheart, Dennis J. McFadden, who survives of Granger. Their marriage of 26 years and Irish-Hungarian heritage produced two wonderful boys: Colin J. and Kevin D. McFadden, both at home. Barb is also survived by five siblings who adored their little sister "Bibs": Maryanne (Gary) Mortenson of Burnsville, MN, Denise (Bruce) Remak of Minneapolis, MN, Deborah (Randy) Istre of Minneapolis, MN, Leslie (Michael) Dick of Indianapolis, IN, and Jay (Tina) Donchetz of Savage, MN; and by many extended family members. Barb was a kind woman with a smile that could light up a room. She loved nothing more than to spend time seated at her big oak kitchen table surrounded by family and friends, reminiscing and playing Euchre. Her laugh always provided warmth to the souls of those who were fortunate enough to be with her. There are countless reasons why Barb was loved by so many. Perhaps the biggest reason is the way she made us feel about ourselves. It was impossible not to love life after spending just
few minutes with this kind and loving person. For more than a decade, Barb struggled with physical disabilities brought about by a catastrophic medical episode that left her in a coma for several weeks in 2002. God's compassionate hand and Barb's refusal to leave her loving husband and two young boys brought her back from the brink. Her 2002 miracle comeback is legendary in the local medical community. Barb not only survived -- she thrived. She never complained, always embraced life, and gave thanks for the extra years she was given to raise her sons. Disabled but not discouraged, Barb lived the rest of her life with dignity, grace and a strength admired by all. She refused to let her physical limitations prevent her from gardening, spending Saturdays at the Farmers Market, and attending swim meets and football games to see her two adoring sons compete with the courage and tenacity they learned from their tough, athletic, Hungarian mother. Barb never complained about her lot in life. She gratefully played the hand she was dealt and smiled while we all marveled at her indomitable spirit. When she finally succumbed to her disabilities, she went willingly to her Savior. Life will not be the same without Barb, but our lives are infinitely more enriched by having had her in ours. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 3:00 pm on Friday, June 13, at St. Pius X Catholic Church, where friends may call from noon to 3 pm before Mass. After cremation her ashes will be interred at Cedar Grove Cemetery, Notre Dame, at a later date. The family is forever indebted to the ICU staff at SJRMC for their professionalism and loving attention to Barb and her family. In Barb's death, she benefitted many people from her donated organs and tissue. Her spirit lives on through her heart, lungs, kidneys and her sparkling eyes. Memorial donations may be made in Barb's memory to: St. Pius X Building Fund, 52553 Fir Rd., Granger, IN 46530. To share memories or send your condolences to the family, log on to: www.McGannHay.com.
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McGann Hay, Granger Chapel
13260 SR 23 Granger, IN 46530
Published in South Bend Tribune from June 12 to June 13, 2014