Donna Lee Lawson, longtime resident of Abilene passed away at Meadowlark Hills in Manhattan, KS on Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020.

She was born Nov. 4, 1930 in the Barnes Community, the daughter of Elsie A. (Wilkinson) and George M. Kappel.

They moved to Clay Center in 1939, where she spent most of her early childhood years. In 1942 her family moved to Abilene. She attended local schools and graduated from Abilene High School with the class of 1946.

On June 11, 1949 she married Samuel L. Lawson. All their married life was spent traveling and following his military career. After his death in 1978 she was employed by the Dickinson County Clerk’s Office, retiring after 27 years of service. She was a member of the First Southern Baptist Church in Abilene.

They say a life filled with love is a life well lived. She lived quietly and loved beyond measure. What an example she has left for all those whose lives she touched. 

Survivors include two daughters Nancy Ehrich of Abilene and Anne Lawson of El Dorado KS, a son Eugene Lawson and his wife Ann of Manhattan KS, six grandchildren Aaron (Jody) Ehrich, Abilene KS, Kristin (Cory) Birdsong, Kansas City MO, Samuel (Michelle) Lawson, Auburn KS, Candy (Brad) Good, Council Grove KS, Amy (Tony) Lewis, Manhattan KS, and Kayla (Ben) Maldonado, Manhattan KS and fifteen great grandchildren Colton, McKenna and Zander Ehrich, Brynn, Grady and Moxie Grace Birdsong, Kenzie and Peyton Lawson, James Nixon, Abbi and Maggie Good, Hailee Lewis, Julian, Tennyson and Leela Maldonado. 

She was preceded in death by her parents, a brother Norman Kappel, and a sister Joyce Hall.

Graveside services celebrating Donna’s life on what would have been her 90th birthday will be 1 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 at the Abilene Cemetery with Pastor Brad Good officiating. 

The family suggests memorials be given to Hospice of Dickinson County. Memorials may be dropped off or mailed to Martin-Becker-Carlson Funeral Home, 414 N.W. Third, Abilene, Kansas 67410. 

Condolences may be sent to the family at

Contact Tim Horan at

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