Donna Wieczorek


Donna Wieczorek, 86, of Mitchell, SD, passed away Sunday, April 23, 2023, at Avera Queen of Peace Hospital in Mitchell. Funeral services will be 2:00 PM Saturday, April 29, at Bittner Funeral Chapel with a visitation one hour prior to the funeral service. Burial will be at Graceland Cemetery in Mitchell.

Donna May Wieczorek (Costlow) was born to Miner and Clara Costlow on October 22, 1936, in Madison, South Dakota. Raised on a farm north of Madison during the Great Depression and World War II, she remembered first getting electricity to the farm and the hard times of getting by with little. Through it all, the constant was family; with two brothers and three sisters, they toiled together with their parents to make a life while filling the home with love.

A 1955 graduate of General Beadle High School in Madison, where she was Homecoming Queen, she attended the Methodist Hospital School of Nursing in Mitchell graduating in 1958. She remained in the nursing field for the next 49 years making many friends and providing care to thousands. Nursing was her calling and also led to the start of her relationship with her future husband, Dean Wieczorek, whom she cared for while he was hospitalized. Dean and Donna were married May 25, 1958, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Madison.

Dean and Donna had four boys together. Donna supported her boys and attended their sporting events tirelessly for years - all while working full-time. She taught them to cook, clean, wash dishes and do laundry while constantly instilling in them that there was no women’s work or men’s work but just a job to be done. She also honed her medical skills on innumerable bumps, bruises, abrasions, contusions, sprained ankles, twisted knees and the myriad of other injuries four active boys could suffer. In later years she taught her grandchildren the same life lessons.

Having lost her father tragically when she was in high school and having suffered the loss of her eldest son Todd when he was 21, Donna persevered and valued above all spending time with her loved ones. She has stayed close with her siblings, their children, and her mother throughout her life. She would not miss any family reunion or family event and visited with her extended family regularly. When Dean passed away, Donna moved in with and shared a home with her youngest sister Judi Titze, who had two sons of her own; for over twenty years, they welcomed into their home their respective sons, their sons’ spouses, nieces, nephews and grandchildren with much love.

Donna is survived by her sons Terry (Sharon), Talbot (Kelli) and Tace (Carmen); grandchildren Britney, Ryan, Megan, Kaylee, Tomas, Todd, Madison, Grady, Autumn, Mac, Maycee, and Sylvie; five great-grandchildren, brother Duane (Michaele) and sister Judi Titze (Darrell). She is also survived by a number of nieces and nephews including Aaron Titze and Chad Titze, whom she thought of as sons, and Chad’s children Caroline and Sam whom she loved as though they were her own grandchildren.

Donna was preceded in death by her husband Dean, son Todd, her parents, sisters Mary Ann Riesland (Wilk) and Betty Lou Hoeft (Wayne), and brother Dean Costlow (Sharee).

In lieu of flowers or other offerings, gifts can be directed to the Todd Wieczorek Memorial Endowed Scholarship at Dakota Wesleyan University, Attn: Institutional Advancement, 1200 W. University Ave. , Mitchell, SD 57301. This endowment was established by Dean and Donna Wieczorek of Mitchell in honor of their son, Todd, a member of the DWU football team. Todd died in September 1980. His jersey, number 83, was retired and placed in the DWU Athletic Hall of Fame.

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