Cover photo for Donna Lee Adams's Obituary
Donna Lee Adams Profile Photo
1943 Donna 2023

Donna Lee Adams

March 10, 1943 — January 2, 2023

Donna Lee Adams of Stone Mountain, Georgia, died January 2, 2023, in Atlanta, Georgia, at the age of 79.


She was born on March 10, 1943, to Curtis and Melba (Harrell) Hankins at Martin Army Hospital in Fort Benning, Georgia.


The quintessential army brat, Donna moved many times in her life due to her father's military service including time in Germany, Georgia, Arkansas, Alaska, Kansas, and California. She graduated from Lowell High School in San Francisco in 1961 and attended the University of Florida.


After meeting her future husband on a blind date, she married Donald L. Adams, Jr. on December 28, 1963, at The Infantry Center Chapel in Fort Benning, Georgia. They were married for 49 years until he passed away in 2012.


The classic army wife, Donna experienced many different duty stations including posts in Georgia, Texas, Nashville, Virginia, New Jersey, Augusta, and her favorite, Hawaii.


Donna was a lifelong homemaker and her greatest passion has always been her family. She had deep compassion and endless caring, laying bear her sweet and gentle heart. Donna had two children, Kelly and Matthew.


Always up for an adventure and never wanting to be left behind, she was an avid traveller and adventurer. Her extensive travels included visits to all fifty states and many foreign countries such as Japan, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Africa, Mexico, Canada, and Bermuda. During her youth, she traveled the Western USA and Canada with her parents and brother Leland while camping in a trailer to places like Yellowstone, Yosemite, Banff National Park, Muir Woods, California's Gold Rush area, and Big Bend. Donna and her brother learned to shot pistols and rifles, tie flies, fish, and hunt. Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, was her favorite place to live when growing up.


Donna was also an accomplished horsewoman. She learned to ride for dressage and show jumping and enjoyed participating in horse shows. Her favorite horse, Miss Para (for "Paratrooper"), was a hunter: 3/4 thoroughbred and 1/4 work horse. Donna was also an accomplished sharpshooter, fan of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets and Arkansas Razorbacks, lover of Hawaiian and Polynesian culture, dog enthusiast, and an expert at watching Westerns.


Part of Don and Donna's military narrative included the events of the 1st Cavalry Division portrayed both on the homefront and in Vietnam in the movie "We Were Soldiers." She moved to Alaska and Texas to live with her parents during Don's two tours in Vietnam.


In recent years Donna enjoyed traveling with family and attending the numerous vocal and theater performances of her granddaughter Grace. She supported the arts at Atlanta Girls' School, Interlochen Arts Academy, and Vassar College.


Donna is survived by her daughter Kelly Adams, son Matthew Adams, granddaughter Grace Adams Ward, and sister-in-law Carole Adams. She is also survived by several nephews and nieces and their children.


Donna was preceded in death by her husband, parents, and brother Leland Thomas Hankins.


Visitation for Donna will be held on Saturday, January 14, 2023, from 10 - 11 am in the Parlor of Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church. A memorial service will be held Saturday, January 14, 2023, at 11 am at the Little Chapel of Glenn Memorial UMC on the campus of Emory University. The Rev. Doc. David Jones and the Rev. Doc. Jessica Terrell will officiate. Interment will follow at Decatur Cemetery in Decatur, Georgia.


After the interment, all are invited to gather for lunch at the home of Carole Adams.


In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations "In loving memory of Donna Lee Adams" to either of her favorite charities: "The Donald Lewis Adams, Jr. Scholarship Fund" at the Georgia Institute of Technology (in care of the Georgia Tech Foundation, Inc.) or the "Children of the Soldiers of the Ia Drang Valley Scholarship Fund" (1st Cavalry Division Association, 302 N. Main St., Copperas Cove, TX 76522-1703, 254-547-6537, firstcav@1cda.org).

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Donna Lee Adams, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, January 14, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Little Chapel of Glenn Memorial UMC

1660 North Decatur Road, Atlanta, GA 30322

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Ceremony

Saturday, January 14, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Little Chapel of Glenn Memorial UMC

1660 North Decatur Road, Atlanta, GA 30322

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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