Deanna Mary Rondeau

Rondeau, Deanna Mary Age 66, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 in Phoenix, Arizona from Alzheimer's disease. Deanna was born on June 14, 1947, Flag Day, in Whitinsville, Massachusetts. In August of 1947, her parents moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin and it was not until June 1950, that they received the diagnosis that Deanna had Down's syndrome. In those years, that information was not readily provided to a parent and when it was, they would be told that her life expectancy would be less than 12 years old and that it would be best to institutionalize her. Deanna was the motivator for her parents to then join a newly formed parents group in which they remained active for fourteen years and supported many advances to improve the lives of the developmentally disabled in Milwaukee. Deanna attended Irving School in West Allis, Wisconsin for her education. When her parents moved to Chandler, Arizona in 1987, Deanna worked at some of the local workshops, participated in the Arizona Special Olympics-Cheerleading, loved listening to music, especially Bobby Vinton, enjoyed sitting at her desk typing and printing from books and went on numerous vacations with her parents. Survivors include her father, Raymond; her sister, Linda, aunts, uncles, cousins and many friends who enjoyed her smiling face. Deanna was preceded in death by her mother, Lydia, who cared for Deanna at home until her death in 2006. The family wants to extend their gratitude to the entire staff at La Estancia Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Phoenix, Arizona for the excellent and loving care they provided Deanna for the past four and a half years. Also, special thanks to the Division of Developmental Disabilities - District 1 for their support over the years and most recently, . Services will be private. Memorial contributions are welcome and can be sent to Special Olympics Arizona, 2100 S. 75th Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85043 or online at

Published in Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on July 24, 2013