October 8, 1952 – November 23, 2022
LaDonna Joy Allen Brown, 70, of Duncan, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, and friend, died Wednesday, November 23rd, 2022, in Duncan, Oklahoma.
LaDonna was born on October 8th, 1952, in Lawton, to Melvin “Skeet” Allen, Sr. and Thelma Mitchell Allen of Lawton. Her family moved to Okmulgee and then to Anadarko where she grew up. In 1954, LaDonna was diagnosed with Polio, which changed the course of her life and direction of her future education. She graduated from Anadarko High School in 1970 and that fall, LaDonna entered Southwestern Oklahoma State College at Weatherford on a Vocational Rehabilitation Scholarship. Southwestern is also where she met the love of her life, John Brown, son of R.J. Brown and Fay Brown of Central High.
LaDonna and John were married August 18th, 1973, at Bethel Baptist Church of Anadarko. After graduation from Southwestern in 1974 with a degree in Elementary Education, and a brief time living in Oklahoma City, the couple moved to Duncan, where they established their home. John and LaDonna were blessed with the birth of twin sons: Evan Sean and Ryan Scott. Three years later, a daughter, Jonna Beth was born. Another beloved daughter joined the family in 2007, when Evan married Jennifer Stauber. LaDonna began her teaching career in Waurika and continued to shape the future of so many beloved students in Bray, Empire, Duncan Head Start and completed her 30-year teaching career as a 4th grade teacher at Horace Mann Elementary. Students remember her best for her role in teaching the Oklahoma Land Run and Christmas Around the World lessons and activities.
After retiring with Duncan Public Schools, LaDonna became the owner and operator of the Tea Room in downtown Duncan for 3 years. LaDonna also worked for her friend and longtime neighbor Dr. Billy Beeson, D.D.S. LaDonna’s recipes were revered by many, and all those who knew her looked forward to her weekly Wednesday postings of her favorite and most sought-after recipes on Facebook. In 2011, Ladonna started a private catering business with her daughter Jonna known as Brown Bag, LLC. Her career as a private caterer provided many amazing meals served to so many friends, family, and community members with the assistance of her daughter, son and daughter in law, granddaughters, niece and great nephews. LaDonna’s talents were many. She loved cooking, baking, and most of all her cross-stich hobby, which will forever be remembered by her family members as the personalized cross-stitched stockings hang each year in their homes. Her biggest devotion was cooking, loving her family, especially her precious granddaughters, and will mostly be remembered as a true and loyal friend. Fellowship with her friends, who were like family, was always a priority to LaDonna.
She cherished her friendships and made it a priority to foster those relationships with her dear friends by cooking and organizing weekly luncheons with her retired teacher friend group known as the YaYas and arranging get-togethers with her friends from college. LaDonna was most of all a faithful servant. She spent many years serving as a cook for Falls Creek with her best friends the “cookies” and countless summers cooking and working VBS. She was always dropping off cookies, baked goods, or leftovers to friends, neighbors, or a family in need. She tirelessly gave of herself to friends, family and loved ones. LaDonna was a member of New Hope Baptist Church and was active in the music ministry and funeral meal ministry.
She is survived by her beloved four-legged companion Precious, of the home; son and daughter in law, Evan and Jennifer Brown and granddaughter Caroline Joy of Edmond; daughter Jonna Beth Brown Turner and granddaughters Elizabeth Joy and Margaret Ann of Lawton; sisters, Onita Cyrus, of Cement, Carol and husband Merle Smith of Noble, and Vicki Eaton of Oklahoma City; special niece Lara Tipton and grandnephews Reid and Grant Tipton; and numerous nieces, nephews and a host of dear friends. She was preceded in death by her son, Ryan Scott Brown, in 1978; her father Melvin “Skeet” Allen, Sr., in 1997; her mother Thelma Mitchell Allen, in 1995; her brother Melvin Allen, Jr., in 2019; and the love of her life and beloved husband John Wayland Brown, who proceeded her in death 12 years to the day in 2010.
Funeral will be held at 2:00 p.m. Thursday at New Hope Baptist Church of Duncan with Randy Southerland and David Leu officiating. Burial will be at Duncan City Cemetery under the direction of Carter-Smart Funeral Home.
Family visitation will be held Wednesday at Carter-Smart Funeral Home between 6:00 and 8:00 p.m.
Pallbearers; Alex Villagrana, Jack Tipton, Reid Tipton, Grant Tipton, Jason Smith, David Leu, Wayne Allen, and Brian Allen. Honorary Pallbearers; Danny Leu, Mark Webb, Tom Flanagan, Jerry Gregston, Walter Johnson, Merle Smith, Terry Paul Cyrus, Sam Siebert, and Charley Beavers. Memorial donations may be made to Christians Concerned, The Toy Shoppe, and New Hope Children’s Ministry.