Donna Mae Mackel, 85

Mackel, Donna Website Photo

Donna Mae Mackel, 85, of Elgin, NE, passed away Thursday, August 17, 2023, at Arbor Care Center, Neligh, NE.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held Tuesday, August 22, 2023, at St. Boniface Catholic Church in Elgin, with Rev. Joeseph Sund and Rev. Ross Burkhalter officiating. Burial followed in the parish cemetery. Visitation was held Monday from 5:00 7:00 p.m. at the church, with a 7:00 p.m. wake service. Memorials are suggested to the family for later designation. 

Levander Funeral Home of Elgin, NE is in charge of the arrangements. Condolences may be sent to the family at


Donna Mae Mackel, daughter of James Frank and Vonda Florine (Serr) Mlnarik, was born February 7, 1938 at Ewing, NE. She was baptized and confirmed at St. Peter’s Church in Ewing, and received her education at Ewing Public School. 

After graduating, she worked as a typesetter for the Norfolk Daily News and then was employed by the Antelope County Treasurers office in Neligh.

On June 13, 1959, Donna married Donald LeRoy Mackel at St. Peter’s Church in Ewing. The couple made their home in Elgin where they were blessed with four children: Steven, Terry, Angela and Tina. Donna was a homemaker and stay-at-home mother until beginning a part-time job as a typesetter and office assistant at the Elgin Review in August 1971 and continued working there until her retirement in 2007.

Donna was a member of St. Boniface Church, St. Boniface Altar Society, St. Boniface Choir, and played for Saturday evening mass for many years. She was involved in the Elgin Community Club, the Red Hatters, and the planning committee for Elgin’s Centennial Celebration in 1989. 

She was instrumental in organizing many dinner theater shows and variety shows in Elgin over the years. 

She loved baking bread, pies, and especially donuts for her grandkids, camping, hosting parties and family gatherings, and the occasional enjoyment of some Tequila Rose. She had an open-door policy, always welcoming her children’s friends and hosted six foreign exchange students.

She is survived by her husband Don of Elgin; four children: Steven Mackel of Lincoln, NE; Terry (Lori) Mackel of Savage, MN; Angela (Dave) Koziol of Lincoln, NE; Tina (Chris) Queen of Malcolm, NE; seven grandchildren: Erica (AJ) Groebner of Fergus Falls, MN; Kelsie Mackel of Lincoln, NE; Allyson (Matthew) Curliss of Boerne, TX; Ciera (Tim) Amling of Cape Coral, FL; Kyler Mackel of Loveland, CO; Greyson Queen of Malcolm, NE; Tessa Queen of Malcolm, NE; six great-grandchildren; three siblings: Dorla Schroeder of Norfolk, NE; Karen (Jim) Mackel of Norfolk, NE; Larry (Marilyn) Mlnarik of Monkey Island, OK; brothers and sisters-in-law: Lyle (Betty) Mackel of Neligh, NE; Eugene Mackel of Atkins, IA; Sharon Lilii of Elgin, NE; along with many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Donna was preceded in death by her parents; in-laws John and Agnes Mackel; brothers-in-law: Dwight Schroeder, Nifo Lilii, and Julius Turner; sisters-in-law: Gerry Mackel and Bonnie Turner.