Donna May Johnson

Donna May Johnson, 88, of Niota, Illinois, passed away at 7:30 p.m. Friday, September 23, 2022 at her home.

She was born on May 14, 1934, at home near Burnside, Illinois, the daughter of Henry Thelma (Knipe) Russell. She married Louis Pilkington, they were married for twenty-seven years. She later married Lyle Johnson, they were married for twenty-three years. He preceded her in death in 2007.

Survivors include three daughters: Diane Pilkington of Niota, Illinois, Angie (Adrien) Robinson of Cornelious, North Carolina, and Linda (Jim) Wilson of Nauvoo, Illinois; four sons: Leland (Debi) Pilkington of Henryetta, Oklahoma, Roger Pilkington of Niota, Illinois, Rick (Kris) Pilkington of Carthage, Illinois, and David (Kim) Pilkington of Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina; three Step Children: Maggie (Mike) Bentley of Peoria, Illinois, Carodeane (Pete) Armstrong of Ottawa, Illinois, and Kevin (Lori) Johnson of Tinley Park, Illinois; twenty-one grandchildren and twenty-nine great grandchildren. Also surviving are two sisters: Juanita (Richard) Sandford, Darlene Hawkins and two brothers Duane (Marsha) Russell, Merlin Russell.

She was preceded in death by her parents; Louis Pilkington; husband: Lyle; son: Kenneth; four sisters: Kathleen Deitsch, Norma Boales, Betty Harris, Karen Knowles and three brothers: Larry Russell, Willard Russell, William Russell.

Donna was a 1952 graduate of Nauvoo High School. From 1952 to 1955, she attended Blessing Hospital – School of Nursing earning her RN, she then went on to earn her Bachelor of Science degree in health arts from the College of St. Frances in Joliet in 1984. She worked as a registered nurse at the Sacred Heart Hospital in Fort Madison, Iowa for thirty-one years. Donna was a member of the Monmouth American Legion Auxiliary. She enjoyed crocheting, knitting, crafts, loved flowers, reading, and traveling.

Visitation will begin at 12:00 noon, Friday, September 30, 2022 at Schmitz – Banks and Beals Funeral Home in Nauvoo, where the family will receive friends from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

A memorial has been established in her memory for Lee County Hospice.

Schmitz-Banks & Beals Funeral Home of Nauvoo is assisting the family with arrangements. On-line condolences to the family may be left at