Darinka (Donna) Knezevic Tomlin was born on February 9,1952 in Wheatfield, Indiana to Zivko and Hildegard Knezevic.
She died on May 1, 2019, surrounded by her family, after a heroic and lengthy battle with cancer. Because her cancer died with her, we will call it a draw: cancer didn't win. Donna beat every odd and outlasted every timeline given to her. The fight was over because Donna decided it was.
Wherever Donna went, she found friends who became her family. She was adored for her generous spirit, fierce nature and her quick wit. She was glamorous and beautiful but could have a mouth like a trucker. Never one to follow the rules, Donna was a truck driver in the 1970's, when women just didn't do that.
Determined and mighty, Donna forged a path where there was none. No one told her she couldn't do something. She gave of herself and shared whatever she had with those she loved, whether it was knowledge, possessions or advice, she gave willingly and freely.
She spoke her mind and would tell you like it is; you never questioned where you stood with Donna. She could tell you about how to bake bread, decorate your home or the best way to plan for retirement.
Donna floated above the fray, but never looked down on anyone. An inspiration to her nieces and nephews, she taught them that no matter where you came from, you could go anywhere.
Donna traveled extensively. She loved dogs and Nascar. She was a talented decorator, making every home she lived in look like a magazine. She loved to entertain and always made guests feel welcome in her home.
Donna married Johnny Roberts on January 19, 2005. He preceded her in death on September 12, 2012. After losing Johnny, Donna found her partner and true love with Tom Tomlin and spent the past six years with him at her side. They were married on April 10, 2019. Tom cared tirelessly for Donna and even before their marriage, honored her in sickness and in health. They were a perfect match. Her travel partner, chemo buddy and adopted son Butt was also at her side day and night.
Donna will be missed more than words can express. She leaves behind her husband; mother, Hildegard; sisters: Ann (Larry) Jackson of Bow, KY and Rhonda (Chris) Murphy of Rensselaer, IN; brother Milan Knezevic of North Carolina; numerous nieces and nephews and countless friends throughout the country. She was preceded in death by her father and her loving sister, Milica. Because they never went long without speaking, they are undoubtedly catching up.
Per Donna's request there will be Celebration of Life gatherings in Rensselaer, IN and Noel, MO at a later date.