Donna Rae Braida
Grant-Johnson Funeral Home
30 W Mechanic St
Princeton, IL
Donna Rae Braida

Born: January 25, 1955; Mendota

Died: May 29, 2021; Princeton

PRINCETON – Donna Rae Braida, 66, of Princeton, Illinois passed away at 8:53 a.m. Saturday, May 29, 2021, at her home, surrounded by family.

Donna was born January 24, 1955 in Mendota, Illinois, the daughter of Ralph and Patricia (Roth) Rod.

She married James C. Braida on November 14, 1992 at St. Matthews Lutheran Church in Princeton.

Donna is survived by three children, Amanda (Matt) Pearson of Mahomet, IL, Dustin (Kendra) Wolford of Princeton, IL, and Jodi (Royce) Fundell of Green River, Wyoming; eight grandchildren, Lisa, Tristin, Laynie, Josiah, Magnus, Caden, Novalyne, and Lilly; her father, Ralph Rod, of Princeton; five siblings, Duane (Linda) Rod of Princeton, Darwin (Alice) Rod of Princeton, Dale Rod of Marco Island, FL, Dawn Sluis of Princeton, and Diane (John) Young of Spring Valley, IL; her mother-in law, Marilyn Braida; two brothers-in-law. Perry and Tim Braida; one sister- in law, Bonnie Braida; numerous nieces and nephews; and her special friend, Mike Kernan and his family.

She was preceded in death by her husband, James C. Braida; her mother, Patricia Rod; her father-in law, James Braida.

Donna graduated from Princeton High School. While in high school, she volunteered as a candy striper at Perry Memorial Hospital. She then worked as a trayline worker in dietary at the hospital before becoming a certified nursing assistant there. She continued her education at Illinois Valley Community College and earned her associates' degree in nursing. She worked at Perry Memorial Hospital and the Emergency Department at Swedish American Hospital in Rockford, Illinois. In 1996 she began her career as an occupational health nurse at LCN Closers, Princeton. In 2012, Donna returned to Perry Memorial within the human resources department as an occupational health nurse. She retired in 2017 with 45 years of employment. From 2017- 2019 she worked per diem as a CPR and first Aad instructor at Perry Memorial.

Donna was also very active within the community. She assisted with Cub Scouts, Brownies, multiple school events, and was a 4H leader. Donna also volunteered for the Perry Memorial antique show, the annual Candy Cane Open House, and the gift shop. She was part of the Homestead Planning Committee, and volunteered at the Lovejoy Homestead. Donna was an exhibitor with the Bureau County fair, winning many awards, notably her flowers. She was the founder and chairman of the Jay Braida Golf Outing, which raises funds to assist a community member who is battling cancer.

She was an active member at St. Matthews Lutheran Church, the Princeton Moose Lodge, and the Bureau County Board. As a county board member she sat on the emergency services and zoning committee and was a liaison between the Bureau County Health Department and County Board.

She has received many volunteer awards. Most recently, she received the Illinois Valley Woman of Distinction Award.

Donna enjoyed travelling, gardening, and helping people. Most of all, she loved her family.

Cremation rites will be accorded and a memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on June 5, 2021 at the Princeton Moose Lodge, with a celebration of life to follow immediately after the service.

Memorials may be directed to the family to establish a memorial at a later time.

Online condolences may be sent to

To plant trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published by Bureau County Republican on Jun. 2, 2021.
No memorial events are currently scheduled.
To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Funeral services provided by:
Grant-Johnson Funeral Home
Sponsored by Grant-Johnson Funeral Home.
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In Sympathy. A light has been extinguished amongst those on Earth. The Heavens have now become brighter. Forever gone, but will not be forgotten.
Carleen Rountree
June 1, 2021
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