Donna G. Sciola of South Kingstown, RI, passed at the age of 83 on June 18, 2021, at HopeHealth Hospice after a short battle with leukemia. She died peacefully surrounded by her sons, grandchildren, and life partner. She was a beloved woman, mother, grandmother and friend.
On March 3, 1938, Donna was born in South Kingstown, RI, and was the daughter of Dr. Basil E. Gilbert and Ethel Lois (Strachan) Gilbert. Donna was the youngest of four children, Dr. Margaret Gilbert (deceased), Helen Marie Cutler of Gainesville, FL, and Robert Gilbert (deceased).
Donna married Clemente Sciola of Peace Dale, RI, in 1960. Clint and Donna had twenty-seven years of committed love and devotion together before his passing in 1987. A few years later, Donna found love again and leaves her life partner Raymond Hughes of North Stonington, CT. Donna loved her two sons and their families, Mark Sciola of Waterford, CT, and Michael Sciola and his husband, Frank Kuan of Hamilton, NY. She adored and was proud of her grandchildren, Anthony Sciola, Ph.D., and his fiancée Fengdan Ye, Ph.D., of New Haven, CT, and Amanda Sciola, MS, of Norwalk, CT. Also, Donna was known as "Mom" or "Momma Donna" to many more people and provided a safe haven for all.
She attended SK High School and graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 1960 with a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education and a Master of Arts in 1981. She taught 1st grade in the San Bernadino, CA, North Kingstown, RI, and South Kingstown, RI, school systems. Altogether, she gave 100s of children an excellent foundation for academic and life success. Many of her former pupils requested her for their children, which made Donna feel happy and loved.
Donna had many passions - faith, art, dance, gardening, travel, cake and ice cream and murder mysteries. Donna had an eye for color and design and was a watercolor artist and quilter who gifted many of her creations to family and friends. She was a life-long member of the Kingston Congregational Church. Donna was a member of Sigma Kappa Sorority, the National Education Association, the RI Education Association, the Arbutus Garden Club, the Narraganset Bay Quilters Association, the Surf Side 8 Square Dance Club. She was a volunteer at South County Hospital and Hospice of RI. Most important, however, she was a member of a tight-knit group of friends known as "The Girls," some of whom she met in kindergarten. The Girls love life, laughter, supporting one another when needed, and will forever be friends. Donna cherished you all.
Those who knew Donna know that her happiest moments were when family gathered, or a friend called or stopped by. Donna's family requests that each of us take time to reach out to someone important in our lives who would be thrilled to hear from you - tell them Donna sent you.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Kingston Congregational Church, 2610 Kingstown Road, Kingston, RI, on July 24, 2021, at 1:30 p.m. The Girls will be taking care of the flowers for the service and reception. In lieu of flowers, Donna's family asks that donations be made in her memory to the Kingston Congregational Church Endowment or to HopeHealth Hospice,1085 North Main Street, Providence, RI 02904. For guest book and condolences, averystortifuneralhome.com.
Published by Southern Rhode Island Newspapers from Jul. 8 to Jul. 16, 2021.