Our favorite person, long time educator, and former Utah Education Association president, Donna Marie Yardley Peterson passed away peacefully on the morning of May 22, 2021 in St. George Utah. She was 92. She was born July 22, 1928 in Beaver, Utah to Annie Lareeta Stoney and John Alfred Yardley. Her family moved to the Panguitch valley area to farm when she was 8 years old. At only 16 she left home to attend BYU, graduating in journalism. In 1949 she married James Aaron Peterson of Circleville, and in 1951 their only child Jan Marie was born. Jan was her greatest joy in life and she said often how proud she was of the wonderful person Jan became.
Donna spent many years in education. She was a strict teacher who loved her students and cared greatly about their long term successes in life. At Panguitch High, Mrs. P taught business, but she was also instrumental in leading the drill team, school newspaper, student government, and annual yearbook. One of her favorite things later in life was when her students would come visit and thank her for all she taught them. Before her husband Jim passed away, she spent many days at the horse races, participating in the riding club, and teaching horse 4H.
Donna’s favorite place was the front porch of her little gray house. She could often be found there enjoying company, or alone just enjoying the sunshine and flowers. She was a wonderful grandma (Gram), and had a special ability to make each one of her grandkids believe that they were secretly her favorite.
She will be greatly missed by her daughter Jan Peterson Frandsen; 5 grandchildren: James (Kayla), Trevor (Holly), Aaron, Annie (Brent), Lauren (Trent), 9 great-grandchildren: Kayla, Cody, Shelby, Joslyn, Ryder, Jackson, Emmie, Claire, Wyatt; brother in law, Dale (Afton) Peterson; many nieces and nephews, and a wonderful community of people who helped make it possible for her to enjoy life until the very end.
She was welcomed home by her beloved husband, parents, siblings and siblings-in-law; her niece Virginia Higbee, and countless well loved dogs.
Funeral services will be held Friday, May 28, 2021 at 12:00 Noon in the Panguitch 2nd Ward Chapel, where friends may call from 10:00-11:30 a.m. Burial will be in the Panguitch City Cemetery. Live streaming of the services and online guestbook can be found at www.maglebymortuary.com under Donna’s obituary. Funeral Directors: Magleby Mortuary, Richfield, Salina and Manti.
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