The City Of Great Falls Has Lost A Great Advocate

On Friday, April 26, 2024 former Great Falls  Mayor, Dona Stebbins passed away with her family by her side.

But this isn't an article about our former mayor. This is an article about my friend, Dona.

Dona Stebbins great falls montana
Grant Stebbins//Canva

I Met Dona When I Was 15 Years Old

I met Dona back in around 1983.  I had won a small role in the May Carol Theatre production of "Paint Your Wagon".  That was such a pivotal point in my life.  In that one spot in time, I met Rod Gates, Dona Stebbins, May Carol and my very best friend, Jaime Taber.

Dona took Jaime and me under her wing right away, and decades later I was still there.

I babysat for Dona and Grant (the love of her life) when I was in high school. They treated me so WELL.  I could listen to any record or read any book I wanted.

Dona & Grant Stebbins
Kate Barrett//Canva

Years later, I was back in Great Falls working radio, and in the sales pit was none other than Dona. It was so surreal to be working with her after looking up to her for so many years.

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Dona Stebbins Was So Much More Than I Ever Knew

Don't get me wrong, I have always known Dona was a force. I have always known what an amazing ally she was.

Then Dona died, and I saw I was just one of the many lives made better by the friendship and protection of Dona Stebbins. Dona was everyone's champion. I'm not really that special, but Dona was.

This is one of the most well written obituaries I've ever read.  Quite honestly, Dona would expect nothing less.

My Life Will Never Be The Same

No, I wasn't at Dona and Grant's all the time.  Ever since Covid, I kept my distance from the in-person stuff for almost everyone in that demographic.  But, I always knew, at the drop of a hat, for any reason whatsoever, that if I needed Dona, she'd be right there, shielding me under her wing, like she always has.

Former Great Falls Mayor Dona Stebbins
Kate Barrett//Canva

The world is just a little more dim, a little less sarcastic and a really great laugh is missing.  But, I'm going to do what Dona would want me to do.  Go on and "do great things, darling".  I sure will miss my friend, protector and champion, but I will never stop trying to make her proud.

Now, in honor of Dona, an animal lover, let's look at these cute dogs.

52 Sleepy SouthCoast Dogs That Will Make You Smile

SouthCoast "pet parents" share their slumbering fur babies for all to see.

Gallery Credit: Gazelle

The Top 24 Great Falls Restaurants For 2024

Using Trip Advisor here are the top 24 restaurants to eat at in Great Falls for 2024. You might see some places with lower star ratings ranking higher than others; remember, these rankings are based not just on ratings but also on the number of recommendations as well.

Gallery Credit: Nick Northern

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