Lillian Claire KITTLE Terrell, Donlon


Known as Terry to most of you, was born in Glendale California in 1922 and was nurtured by a loving family. She was partially raised on her grandparent’s desert homestead in Lancaster where she was free to roam the hills with her faithful companions Rex and Laddy, the families two German Shepards always watching over her. Games, laughter and storytelling were nightly events along with reading the bible and singing songs and hymns.

Back in Glendale she attended the Seventh Day Adventist Academy for girls, instructed in etiquette, grace and manners. She married James Terrell (Garrick’s father) in 1942 but divorced after just a few years, moving then to Las Vegas where her mother was living. Later she met a young Air force Lt named Bill Donlon.

They were married in 1949 and shared an exciting life for almost 60 years. They lived in New York City, Brazil, Argentina, Panama and Rio de Janeiro. She was awarded a job to work at the White House for the office of the Secretary of the Air Force however it coincided with her husband’s promotion and they were transferred to Brazil.

After a crash course in Portuguese she learned to entertain diplomats and host receptions for formal events with Brazilian Air Force personnel. When Bill retired they moved to Florida then on to California to be near her mother and son, living in a golf course community much like Charbonneau near San Diego. After Bill’s death in 2003 she moved to Oregon.

She was an avid bridge player, playing sometimes 3-4 times a week, and loved painting and singing. For all the years that I knew Terry she was always one to turn lemons into lemonade and brought sunshine and smiles into each and every day. She always looked at the bright side of any given situation and considered obstacles as new possibilities. She might grumbled over news or politics, but she could also laugh and snicker like a little girl over silly things as well. She prided herself on keeping up with current events, loving to discuss the mundane to the bizarre. She loved her friends here in Charbonneau—they meant the world to her and were part of her ‘family’. I know we will all miss her dearly.

Click on the book to listen to her stories ~

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