DONNA GILLIS Donna Louise Gillis, 82, of Las Vegas, went to dance with her husband again Oct. 15, 2013. She was born Oct. 10, 1931, in Highland Park, Mich., to Thomas and Martha Doench. Donna moved to Las Vegas 12 years ago. Not only was Donna a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, aunt and friend, she inspired so many students when she taught for the Canal Zone School System, which later became the Department of Defense Division of Schools after the passage of the Panama Canal Treaty, from 1971 until she retired in 1995. Throughout her distinguished teaching career, Donna received numerous recognitions and awards for her excellence in education. She was respected and admired by her peers, students and community members. A military wife for the early years of her marriage, she lived in California, Guam, Japan, Washington, D.C., Virginia, Puerto Rico, and the Canal Zone. She loved to travel and explore the world. She earned her bachelor of arts in education degree from Florida State University in 1970 and her master of arts in education degree from Arizona State University
in 1974. She was a life-long learner. As foster parents from 1975-1978, Donna and her husband made a positive difference in the lives of several foster children. She was a member of the Eastern Star and was a Mother Advisor for the Royal Order of the Rainbow Girls. In 1984, she received the Grand Cross of Colors for her distinguished service to Rainbow Girls in Ancon, Panama. She also belonged to the congregation of St. Luke's Episcopal Church, in Ancon, Panama. She was a member, as well as newsletter editor and past president of Phi Delta Kappa. She was the historian for the Isthmian College Club and was a member of the Panama Canal Society. She was preceded in death by her loving husband, of 53 years, Norman; and son, John Gillis. She is survived by her daughters, Barbara McCarthy of Phoenix, and Betsy Gillis of Las Vegas; and son, James Gillis of New Orleans. Donna also is survived by daughter-in-law, Julie Gillis; grandchildren, Sean and Sarah McCarthy, and Daniel, Naomi and Tamar Gillis; brother, David Doench; nephews, Alan Gillis, David, Greg and Chris Doench; niece, Leslie Muir; and several great-nephews and great-nieces. Memorial services will be at 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19, at Palm Mortuary/King David Memorial Chapel, 2697 E. Eldorado Lane. Burial will be at Mountain View Cemetery, Prescott, Ariz. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Shriners Hospital for Children, 2900 Rocky Point Drive, Tampa, FL 33607-1460.