March 13, 1951 – January 26, 2019
A bright and beautiful spirit has moved on to other realms. Donna Lee Stevens (“Lee”) passed away peacefully at home in Nelson, BC in the early hours of Jan. 26th, 2019. Lee was born in Goose Bay, Labrador to Edna Doris Stevens (nee Mattison) of Halifax, NS and Charles Elmer Stevens of Moncton, NB; the youngest of three daughters. After her childhood and adolescence in Labrador, Ontario and New Brunswick, Lee earned her BA at Acadia University and her MA at McMaster before heading to Vancouver, where she quickly found her niche in the feminist and LGBTQ communities. After working for the BC provincial government as a social worker she went to UBC for her MBA. She subsequently worked for the Red Cross and the Cancer Society before finally following her love of cooking through starting a personal chef business. She also studied textile arts at Capilano College in North Vancouver and produced many inspired pieces, one of which was featured in a textile show in Vancouver. Lee loved to travel and in addition to driving to favourite spots across North America (she particularly loved Mexico), she toured through Hawaii, Western Europe and China. In 2013 Lee moved with her partner Liz to Nelson, BC where they quickly found a vibrant and welcoming community and established several wonderful and lasting friendships.
Most of all Lee will be remembered for how much she was dearly loved by family, friends and anyone who got to know her (including several beloved dogs and cats over the years). She genuinely loved getting to know people and, as one of her nieces recently noted, she had a gift for always making anyone she spoke with feel like they were the most interesting person in the room. Her passion for gathering people together via her amazing dinner parties was matched only by her passion for discussing social issues, politics and of course, cooking. Her bright flame was extinguished far too soon.
Lee is survived by her partner Liz, sisters Lynne (John) and Laurie (Jim), nephews and nieces Nick (Lydia), Chris (Lori), Jamie (Phil), Michael and Sarah (Olman) in addition to 5 grand nieces and 6 grand nephews.
“Remember me with smiles and laughter, for that is how I will remember you all. If you can only remember me with tears, then don’t remember me at all.”
– Laura Ingalls Wilder