Donna Roraback

July 31, 1945 - November 12, 2023
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Donna Mae (Calderella) Roraback, born on July 31st, 1945, in Pittsfield MA, passed away peacefully on November 12th, 2023, with family by her side. Donna’s life story is of strength, determination, and perseverance.

Donna is the daughter of the late Michael Calderella and Dorothy Mae Chevrette Calderella. She is pre-deceased by her beloved spouse Robert “Bob” Alton Roraback, Married July 2, 1982, in Dalton MA. She has two children, Laurel Mae Mons (Mark Douglas) and Jack Aaron Hassan (Maureen Ann). Four stepchildren, Robert Michael Roraback, Wendy Rose Sykes, James Stanton Roraback, and Robin Mary Khoury. One grandchild, Connor Aaron Hassan, and his partner Rachel Arseneau. Many step-grandchildren including Nancy-Jo Starling and Andrew Starling, and numerous great-grandchildren. Her siblings include Michael Arthur Calderella (Nuan), Peter Joseph Calderella, and Karen Marie Sanderson (Paul). She has a niece and five nephews. Also, her dear friend of over 50 years, Linda Marie Slonski.

Donna attended Pittsfield high school when she met and married Jack B Hassan in 1964 and had two children. She became a single mother, working as a waitress until she was employed by General Electric. There she broke down barriers working jobs where no woman had worked before. She remained at General Electric for twenty years.

Donna’s focus turned to continuing her education after GE shutdown. She received an Associate’s degree with honors from Berkshire Community College. She was accepted into Smith College and graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Arts degree. During her time at Smith, she lost her husband Bob unexpectedly. She continued with her education and received her Master of Science, at Clemson University, College of Engineering.

Donna embarked on her career as a hydrogeologist with CH2M Hill company. She relocated to Jacksonville FL and then later to Phoenix AZ until she retired at age 70 in 2015. She moved to Tucson, AZ in 2016 to lived near her daughter and son-in-law. She loved Tucson and the many close and dear friends she made there.

Donna was an avid lover of gardening, travel, reading, watching movies and so much more. While she lived in Dalton MA, she had very elaborate vegetable gardens. Her beautiful gardens, bordered with marigolds, were something to be admired. Her travel days began while at Smith College where she enrolled in classes that took her from the Sonoran Desert to the Amazon. Her work with CH2M Hill took her on assignments all over the United States. She sought out international travel and has been to countries in South America, the Caribbean, Italy, Albania, Greece, Turkey, and many other places. She always had new destination in mind. In between her worldly travels she always found time to return home to Pittsfield to visit her family every year.

Her spirit will live on in the countless lives she touched, and she will be forever remembered for her unwavering strength, resilience, and generosity.

A celebration of life will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the Sarcoma Foundation of America at

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Timeline for Donna Roraback

Born: July 31, 1945
Died: November 12, 2023

Condolences for Donna Roraback

Marana Mortuary & Cemetery

Our sincere condolences.

The staff of Marana Mortuary & Cemetery.


Gertrude Sanderson posted on 12/3/23

My thoughts are with Donna's family and friends as each of us remember and honor her in our own special way. Donna was one of the strongest women I have ever known. Her determination in pursuing her Education and then enjoying such an interesting and successful career speak strongly of her character. Donna's sense of humor, her love of life, and her love for her family and many friends are only a few of the many things I will always remember about her and I treasure those memories. I hold Donna in high esteem and pray that each of you can find comfort in your own memories of her as I truly will.


Kathy posted on 11/21/23

I will miss you Donna. So proud to have known you. You were such a fighter a real inspiration indeed. So sad for your family who will miss you so. Rest in peace. ❣️?


Sharon and Furdie Johnson posted on 11/16/23

SO VERY SORRY Laurel and family for the void this will leave in all of your lives. Donna was a teacher by the life she lived. SHE upheld authenticity and was never afraid to change course. Even when she had no safety net, she just continued forward and put herself in that desired direction. SHE is a battle tested warrior and truly LIVED her life with an absence of fear. SHE left us knowing that STRONG women aren't simply BORN, they are MADE by the storms they walk through...THANK YOU MY FRIEND for being one of those in my life that left me with such a model of a friend, that I am convinced that you were made as a LIMITED EDITION. Till my last breath, I will remember YOU.


ROBERT M RORABACK posted on 11/15/23