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School 23

Donna Jean Young

February 21, 1956 ~ September 18, 2019 (age 63)

My wife, Donna Jean Young, 63, died in her home surrounded by her husband and family on Wednesday, September 18, 2019.  She fought a 4 year battle with Leiomyosarcoma with dignity, grace, and joy.

Donna was born in 1956 at the US Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland to parents, Ima Jean and Navy Chief Donnie Boykin.

She attended grades 1-5 at Encanto Elementary in San Diego, CA.  After her mother’s death on May 9, 1967, her father moved all four children to 917 E. Washington St. in Harlingen to live with their beloved Mema (Claudia Mae Boykin) and Pa Pa (Ira Webster Boykin).  These special grandparents were very instrumental in their upbringing, providing love and care to four motherless children.

Donna attended grades 6-12 in the Harlingen School System and graduated in 1974.  She was an HHS Cardette for three years cheering the Cardinals on.  “Cardinal Sprit Never Dies”

Donna earned her BS in Elementary Education from Texas A&I University in Kingsville, TX.  While in college, she worked teaching fellow foreign students how to speak and write English, which she loved doing.  She also worked at Texas A&I Nursery School.  Both of these jobs influenced her future career of teaching children.

Donna was a wonderful Language Arts/Reading teacher.  She taught 28 years: two at Ben Milam, two at Wilson, six at Stuart Place, seven at Austin, one at Jefferson and lastly 10 years at Coakley Middle School.  Donna served many leadership roles during her teaching career.  She was an ELA department head, UIL Coach and served many times as a mentor to other teachers.  One of her greatest accomplishments while teaching at Coakley, was having her students adopt troops serving in Fallujah, Iraq and Afghanistan after the event of 911.  She had her students write old fashioned letters as well as send emails to the troops adopted by her classes.  They sent Christmas gifts, Easter gifts, and Valentine’s Day gifts.  On many occasions when the soldiers returned from their tour, they would make special visits to school to meet the students who had cheered them on.

Donna is preceded in death by her grandparents, her mother, and first husband, Wyatt Farley. Donna is survived by me, her husband, Lee Young.   She also leaves behind daughter, Melissa Jean Farley Atchley (Steve); son, Justin Eugene Farley; son, Brian David Young (Kristin); and son, Benjamin Clayton Young.  She also leaves behind grandchildren, Michelle Young, Carolyn Young, Leah Young, Clayton Young, Will Parr, Kaitlyn Reece, and Kenzee Atchley.  She is also survived by her father, Donnie Boykin and his beloved friend, Bodil Page, along with her siblings, Barbara Stohler (Buddy), Susie Groves (Bill), Curtis Boykin (Jennice), Cindy Griggs (Jude), Becky Quintero (Benito), and Jesse Boykin (Aurora).  She also leaves behind Tricia and Jerry Irvin, Pat Edans (Phyllis-deceased), and her dear step-mother, Rosa Boykin.  She also is survived by numerous nieces and nephews and some more local family.

Visitation hours with the family present will be held from 4 to 7 PM on Sunday, September 22 at Buck Ashcraft Funeral Home.

Funeral services will be held at Christian Fellowship Church, 2:00 PM, Monday, September 23, 2019.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial gift in Donna’s name can be made to Blue Sunday, P.O. Box 531653, Harlingen, TX 78553 or to Young Life Cameron County, P.O. Box 533087, Harlingen, TX 78553.

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