Donna Fletcher Turns Grief Into Action

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Photo courtesy Donna Fletcher

When Ronald and Donna Fletcher tied the knot in 1997, they never expected their time together would be cut short by cancer. Ron and Donna’s love story began at Joy Manufacturing, where Ron, a skilled manufacturing engineer, and Donna, a dedicated professional in human resources, first crossed paths.

In the year of their 25th anniversary, Ron was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma, a skin cancer which affected his head and neck. Despite fighting hard, Ron lost his battle in 2023 at the age of 80.

Donna now honors Ron’s memory by giving back to the hospital that cared for him. She wants to ensure other patients receive the same high standard of care and personal attention Ron did in his last months. “We were fortunate to have access to some of the best oncological care in the country right here in Venango County,” she said. “The staff at the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center at UPMC Northwest is unmatched. They made our experience very comfortable.”

Before Ron’s passing, they were both supporters of the Northwest Hospital Foundation. Donna now pays forward her gratitude and honors Ron’s life by giving to the Foundation in his memory. She said, “I give to make sure the things that were provided to him continue to be provided to others. It keeps his memory alive.”

She is particularly passionate about ensuring the latest technology is available for patients, whether that’s state-of-the-art surgical equipment or amenities like cooling caps which may help chemotherapy patients prevent hair loss. “We are lucky to have such talented medical practitioners here. It’s important to make sure they have access to the latest technology so they can put their skills to use treating patients,” she said.

These days Donna is turning her grief into action to help others. She serves on multiple boards, including the Foundation’s Corporation Board, in addition to being the Deputy Mayor of Franklin. She knows her efforts make a difference in the lives of so many in our community.

“When you give, you put good back into the world. Ron lives on through the good we do at the hospital.”

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