Obituary of Donna Newman
NEWMAN, Donna – passed away at Heritage Manor on Thursday, February 17, 2022.
Donna Lena Newman of Pembroke, daughter of the late Frederick & Mabel Newman (nee Magee). Beloved mother of the late Andrei Androsoff (2021). Survived and missed by her brother Douglas Newman (Lorraine) of Okanagan Falls, B.C., and sister Camellia Joan Lypchuk (Edward) of Brockville, Ontario. Caring aunt of Jason & Joanna Newman; Tanya Ann Crowley; Andrea Jan Lypchuk; and Donna Joan Lypchuk. She will be remembered by extended family members, friends and co-workers from her career at AECL.
The family wishes to extended a heartfelt thank you to Heritage Manor in Pembroke for their excellent care, compassion and support.
Respecting Donna’s wishes, cremation will take place. Spring interment. Arrangements entrusted to Malcolm, Deavitt & Binhammer Funeral Home, Pembroke. As an expression of sympathy, donations to the Canadian Mental Health Association or the Robbie Dean Family Counselling Centre would be appreciated. Online donations/condolences are available at www.mdbfuneralhome.com
Text written by her son Andrei Androsoff:
Donna Newman grew up poor in rural Saskatchewan, Canada in the 1950s, when women were still expected to be housewives, or do clerical or service work. But she wanted to be a physicist. She had excellent grades, but was told by the Dean of Physics at her university that there was “no place for women in physics.”
Crushed but undaunted, she obtained a degree in chemistry instead, and after graduation, worked as a laboratory chemist, then as a technical writer. Her husband’s job necessitated frequent moves, but her employer, an American oil industry association, valued her work enough to allow her to work by correspondence, submitting her abstracts by mail. She later became a manager in the fast-paced offices of a Toronto financial newspaper's information service.
When she got home from her high-pressure job, Donna was expected to care for their baby, cook and clean, but still pursued many hobbies and interests. A nature lover, she photographed the landscape of the family cottage near Algonquin Park and studied pond life under her microscope. She also loved physical activity, and was an early adopter of yoga, Nordic skiing and windsurfing. She enjoyed cooking based on scientific principles, discovering in the early 70s the same “superfoods” we celebrate now. She also enjoyed watercolour painting and playing the 5-string banjo.
When Donna became seriously ill, her husband left her for another woman. Nevertheless, with the help of her sister’s family, she recovered, and continued her career by introducing desktop publishing and modern branding to Canada’s largest nuclear research laboratories, where she won a prestigious award for her achievements in marketing of advanced scientific equipment and services.
Donna did all this while raising a son alone, whom she provided for, gave ample opportunities, taught morality by example, spared from religious dogma, and loved unconditionally and limitlessly. That son is me.
Today’s professionals, mothers, health nuts, athletes, and writers owe a debt to the many women like Donna Newman, who pioneered, persevered and proved what women were capable of while society was trying to keep them in their place.
Donna is now retired and lives in Pembroke, Ontario, where she enjoys watching the seasons pass while listening to CBC Radio, talking with family and friends on the phone and internet, and winning her weekly game of Scrabble.
I salute you, Mom. International Women’s Day could have no finer ambassador.