Donna Rinaldi

Donna C Rinaldi

Thursday, June 30th, 1927 - Sunday, September 20th, 2020
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Donna C. (nee McGriff) Rinaldi, 93, formerly of Willoughby, passed away Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Stow.
Born June 30, 1927, in Marion, Ind., she had been a resident of Willoughby for 65 years before moving to assisted living, first in Lake County and most recently in Stow.
Donna was a 1945 alumnus of Marion High School and received her Bachelor of Music degree from St. Louis Institute of Music (S.L.I.M.) in 1949, where she met the love of her life, Ray (married September 4, 1949). ("I sat behind him in music history class and loved being distracted by his long eyelashes.") They enjoyed 64 years of married life until his passing. In her words discovered in college love letters, "I love you more than anything in this world--even including MUSIC!"
Donna was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Willoughby, where she was active in many capacities, including music ministry, bell choir, and Mary Martha Women's Circle. She taught piano from her home her full adult life to age 85 and enjoyed her role as accompanist for a women’s vocal trio & for many young instrumentalists, including her violinist daughters, grandson & husband's students. She was an accomplished solo pianist but remained humble about performing, preferring to master the art of accompaniment, a special collaborative gift. She thoroughly enjoyed homemaking at their Glenwood Avenue home ("I loved being a mother. And now a grandmother!"), cooking and baking for family and friends, hosting yearly piano recitals for her beloved students, attending Cleveland Orchestra concerts as season-ticket holders, and attending countless other musical performances, especially enjoying those of her husband, daughters & grandchildren. Some of our favorite memories are of her active participation with us in childhood play; she loved children and never lost the ability to look at the world through their perspective. Donna was an avid fan of both the Cleveland Indians and Cavaliers. In semi-retirement, she and Ray enjoyed yearly vacations to a Conneaut cottage and Ft. Myers condo, visits with her sisters in Indiana and Connecticut, holiday parties at Suzanne and Don's and grandchildren's homes and frequent getaways to Diane and Mike's Brady Lake cottage. She and Ray continued as steadfast attendees of Lakeland Civic Orchestra (daughter Suzanne, concertmistress), grandson Greg's YSU performances, his Howland High School Band, and granddaughter Stephanie's performances with the Ohio State Marching Band, and granddaughter Amanda's musical theatre performances, including top billing as "Annie" herself (in "Annie") and as "Ado Annie" (in "Oklahoma"). Donna was the epitome of a proud grandma..
She was the loving mother of Diane L. (Michael) Williams; cherished grandmother of Gregory A. (Jessica) Rezabek, Stephanie N. (Brian) Suter, Timothy M. Williams, C. Todd (Mary) Williams and Amanda M. Rose; mother-in-law of Donald Rezabek; sister-in-law of Beth Milliron, Nicolina “Nicki” Rinaldi and Ernest Rinaldi; and well-loved aunt to nieces and nephews through three generations. She also leaves behind her best life-long friend, Virginia "Ginny" Bothwell (Bill, dec.).
Donna was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Raymond R. Rinaldi in 2014; daughter, Suzanne A. Rezabek; parents, John C. ("Mac") and Bernice (nee Evans) McGriff; sisters, Margaret Ellen (Ralph, dec.) Tuttle and Doris McGriff; brother-in-law, John Rinaldi; and sister-in-law, Betsy Rinaldi.
Family wishes to thank those from Pine Hill Country Care, There's No Place Like Home assisted living, The Landing of Stow, and Crossroads Hospice for their compassionate care and friendship.
Private family services to be held. Burial in Western Reserve Memorial Gardens in Chester Township.
The family suggests contributions in her name be made to First Presbyterian Church of Willoughby, 4785 Shankland Blvd., Willoughby, OH 44094, Parkinson’s Foundation, 200 S.E. 1st Street, Suite 800, Miami, FL 33131, or to the charity of your choice.
Arrangements are entrusted to McMahon-Coyne-Vitantonio Funeral Homes in Willoughby and Mentor.
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Service Details

  • Interment

    Western Reserve Memorial Gardens
    11521 Chillicothe Road
    Chester Township, OH 44026
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
Private family services to be held.


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Jane Greenwood Coumos

Posted at 01:13pm
Diane ~ I'm so sorry. What a beautiful photo and tribute to your dear mother. I have fond memories of her and your father. My mom said your mother always spoke of you and asked about me when they saw each other. I have thought of you often over the years and hope you are doing well.

With love and prayers ~
Jane (Greenwood) Coumos

Kenneth Mehalko

Posted at 04:32pm
A great Lady. I appreciated her positive energy and her devotion to Ray and the musical groups he was a part of. She will be missed.
My condolences to her family.
Ken Mehalko


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