Cover photo for Donna L. Behrends's Obituary
Donna L. Behrends Profile Photo
1931 Donna 2017

Donna L. Behrends

April 25, 1931 — March 16, 2017

Donna Louise (Hartell) Behrends was born April 25, 1931 in Auburn, Nebraska. She was one of three children of Richard H. and Marjorie (Runyan) Hartell. Donna was baptized April 16, 1944 in the Auburn Methodist Church, and attended school in Auburn.

On August 29, 1949, Donna was united in marriage to Maynard Behrends in Hiawatha, Kansas. She was confirmed at St. John Lutheran (Stone) Church on November 26, 1950, and became a faithful member of the church. The couple made their home near Johnson, Nebraska, and were blessed with three children: Carolyn, Corrie, and Craig.

Donna kept busy running the household and raising her children. She was known as a great cook, and made some of the best doughnuts ever! She also enjoyed working in her vegetable and flower gardens.

One interest of Donna’s was crocheting. She made many, many afghans through her life, and shared them generously with others. Donna enjoyed camping with family and friends, reading, and she loved her cats. Most of all, however, Donna loved spending time with her children and her grandchildren.

Donna entered the Johnson County Hospital in Tecumseh, Nebraska on March 7, 2017. It was there, with family around her, she passed away on Thursday, March 16, 2017. She had reached the age of 85 years, 10 months, and 19 days. Her parents and sister Beverly Gilbertson preceded her in death.

Donna is survived by her husband of almost 68 years, Maynard, of Johnson; children Carolyn and husband Russ Eltiste of Tecumseh, Corrie Thies of Tucson, AZ, Craig and wife Lori Behrends of Auburn; grandchildren and spouses Russell, Jr. and Christine Eltiste; Nicole and Gerard Straka; Jennifer and Brian Dodson; Jamison and Penny Thies; Blayne and Bonnie Behrends; Michael and Daleen Behrends; Stacy and Terry Benham; great-grandchildren Taylor, Courtney, and Mackenzie Eltiste; McKensie and husband Ryan Downey; Parker, Colt, and Harley Straka; MK, Rose, Frankie, and Hazel Dodson; Jalen, Brooklyn, Lauren, Joscelyn, Lleyton, and Quentin Behrends; Mason, Rowen, and Calvin Benham; brother Richard L. and wife Sharon Hartell of Lincoln; other relatives and friends.

A funeral service will be Monday, March 20, 10:30 a.m. at St. John Lutheran (Stone) Church near Auburn. Burial will follow in the church cemetery. Visitation will be at the funeral home Sunday noon to 8:00 p.m., with family greeting friends 5:00 to 7:00.

Memorials are suggested to family choice.

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

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, March 19, 2017

12:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

Hemmingsen Funeral Home

801 S St, Auburn, NE 68305

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St. John Lutheran Cemetery

63289 725 Rd, Auburn, NE 68305

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