Donna Jean Bow1

F, b. 15 February 1958, d. 14 February 2022
Donna Jean Bow Leath Shaw (Provided by Sherry Jordan Hunter)
     Donna Jean Bow was born on 15 February 1958 at Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana.1 She was the daughter of Albert Maurice Bow and Guadalupe Sylvia Aleman.1 She married Terry Leath on 7 June 1975 at Marion County, Indiana.1,2 She married Bobby E. Shaw after 1990 at Marion County, Indiana.1,3,4 She died on 14 February 2022 at Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana, at age 63.5,6

Donna Jean Leath Kennedy
February 15, 1958 - February 14, 2022


Donna Jean Leath Kennedy, a selfless mother, wife, grandmother, sister, daughter, aunt and friend, left this life unexpectedly at the age of 63 on Monday, February 14th, 2022. Donna was surrounded by her loving family at the IU Health Bloomington Hospital when she entered eternal rest. She was one of four children born to Albert Maurice Bow and Guadalupe Sylvia (Aleman). Her life began on Saturday, February 15, 1958, in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Donna spent the majority of her life in Indianapolis before moving to Martinsville in 2019. She attended Scecina High School in Indianapolis and retired from Allegion in 2020 after several years of employment. No stranger to hard work, Donna had worked at RCA and General Motors prior to gaining employment at Allegion.
She held true to her beliefs and was of the Catholic faith. She loved her family fiercely and was a dedicated mother to her three boys. Donna enjoyed cooking, hosting family gatherings, entertaining, shopping, spending time with family and friends and she had a love for dogs.
She was richly blessed with a large family and network of dear friends including her husband, John E. Kennedy of Martinsville; mother and stepfather, Guadalupe and Dale Carnes of Greenfield; three sons, Anthony, Aaron, and Adam Leath (husband, David Gower) all of Indianapolis; two brothers, Jerry Bow (wife, Patricia) and Richard Bow (wife, Denise) both of Greenfield, IN; one sister, Deanna Dollinger (husband, Steven) of Chelsea, MI; two stepsons, Tom Kennedy (wife, Heidi) and Chris Kennedy (wife, September) both of Martinsville, IN; three grandchildren, Brandon, Austin and Alyssia; and three step grandchildren, Kaylyn, Monroe and Elijah.
She was preceded in death by her father, Albert Bow.
The family will be receiving guests on Monday, February 21st from 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm at Neal & Summers Funeral and Cremation Center in Martinsville. In honoring Donna’s wishes, she will be cremated following the visitation.
Memories and condolences may be shared with the family online at

A beautiful tribute was posted on social media site Facebook from Donna's friend Carol Walker Brady.

"I think I’m ready to talk about Donna Kennedy. Before I could do this, I had to see through a huge event that I was undertaking, and recover a little from “the stop me in my tracks, stomp on my heart, and the complete disbelief of her passing”. But here I go…
Anyone that knows me, knows that one of my best friends is Donna. Most of my stories start with, “This one time, my friend Donna and I….” I called her my “Partner in Crime” but we never committed any crimes. We just found ourselves in hilarious situations.
We met when I was eighteen and she was twenty. We weren't quite two years apart, but that only matters when one of you reaches 21 before the other. Well, maybe we did commit a crime or two because I would borrow Sherrill’s id and Donna would get me into the bar because I never took the time to memorize Sherrill’s SS#. Back then, DL didn’t have photos. Donna would talk the bouncer into letting me in. This would be after he would send me outside to try and study the SS number.
We met at work, and I could not get over how much life Donna had already experienced. She was married, had a baby, and even lived in California for a while. I was mesmerized. What I loved about her was her energy. Always ready to go, and I was the same way. It could be a Thursday night and I would beg her to go out. “Come on, just for a couple of hours” Two hours later, “Please Donna, let’s go home” We had so much fun throughout our time that we work together and those clubbing days.
As we got older, life got much more serious. Responsibilities could no longer be ignored. Donna had become a single mom, responsible for three young boys. Global trade became a thing, and we all knew that eventually the factory was going to close, and we would need to find other jobs. Donna was "Leaning In" before Sheryl Sandburg coined the phrase. She was getting jobs at the factory that was normally given to the few men that worked there. Having started her adult life earlier than most she still needed a GED. She knew that she was going to need some skills to get a job that would support her family. Within about three years, she got her GED and an Associated Degree majoring in two different fields. She found grants that paid her tuition and allowed her to complete her schooling full time.
When looking for a job, she took on the task as if it was a job. She would line up interviews and would be busy all week until she found what appealed to her. At the time, other people were flailing at finding work, she was getting multiple offers. Now, I making it sound like she did this easily, but I saw the work that she was putting into it. When she got a job at GM, they sent her to school in Detroit and she drove herself there every time she had to go. Didn’t matter what the weather was doing.
When looking for a companion, Donna used the same technique as looking for a job. When I would complain about a choice or two that she made, she would tell me, “It’s not easy being 50 and single”. Uhhhhh, okay, I couldn’t argue with that, I had to weed out some losers when I was in my 20’s so I knew she was spot on.
Donna had the gift that most of us lose when we are about seven years old. The gift of being able to make a new friend anywhere you go. Once you were her friend, she would make you feel as if you were her only friend. Somehow, she would find a way in her very full and busy life to check in with you. Meet you for lunch or dinner. And she didn’t keep her friends separate from each other, she would say, “Come on, I know you are going to really like these people”, and she would be right.
Donna’s biggest virtue was also her biggest flaw, and that was her ability to FORGIVE. All you would have to do is say you’re sorry to her and she would forgive you. Which explains why she may have let some negative people stay in her life a little longer than they deserved. And, you can’t be friends with somebody as long as Donna and I have been friends, without a few bumps in the road. But one time I did hurt her badly, and she went a year without speaking to me. I tried to apologize, I would call, send messages, trying to get her to speak to me. If it wasn’t for another friend facilitating the forgiveness, I don’t know if we would have reconnected. Donna finally called me, I apologized. She actually, gave me the excuse for my poor judgement and told me to NEVER SPEAK OF THIS AGAIN. Of course, that meant she could, and I couldn’t, but it was my fault, and I was going to take my punishment for as long as it took.
We got back on track and started traveling again, tried to go someplace yearly. We were looking at options for a trip and planning to meet Peggy in Florida. I had went as far as blocking some rooms for the three of us. Also, I was going to help her make her honeymoon plans. We had just spoken three days before she un-expectantly passed.
I had read an article in the Indy Star onetime. A reporter had interviewed Medium, Annie Truesdale. Annie told the reporter after the interview was completed to be careful because she was about to run into Batman. "Fat chance", thought the reporter. As she left the Medium’s storefront, walking, she turned the corner and a man, walking, who was turning the corner in the opposite direction. They collided into one another. Her face went smack into his chest, and you guessed it, he was wearing a Bat Man T-shirt. Annie’s story was that she didn’t tap into her gifts until her best friend passed and she said to him, if there is life on the other side send me a sign. She said, “send me the color yellow, a yellow that cannot be ignored” She was in route to South Bend to his memorial, and soon she was passing field after field of sunflowers.
After Donna passed, I thought if there is the ability to communicate in the afterlife,” Donna, send me a message”. As I was thinking this driving to Bloomington, to say goodbye to my friend, a song that I haven’t heard in ages came on the radio. Then, almost daily before her showing at the funeral home, the song would play on the radio or Pandora. Today, thinking about what I would write about Donna, this song came on the radio. Has it always played before, and I didn’t pay attention? I don’t think so, it was a favorite with I was younger. A friend had to remind me the name of the band that played this song, it had been so long. A few of the lyrics seemed to apply.
Jet Airliner ~ Steve Miller
Leavin’ home, out on the road
I’ve been down before
Ridin’ along in this big ol’ jet plane
I’ve been thinking about my home
But my love light seems so far away
And I feel like it’s all been done
Somebody’s tryin’ to make me stay
You know I’ve got to be movin’ on
Goodbye to all my friends at home
Goodbye to people I’ve trusted
I’ve got to go and make my way
Ridin’ high I got tears in my eyes
But you know you got to go through Hell
Before you get to Heaven

Children of Donna Jean Bow and Terry Leath


  1. [S63] Interview, Lupe Bow, Interview with Lupe and her sister Maria.
  2. [S68] Marion County, IN Marriage Records, online, Marriage Record Number      315175
    Groom      TERRY LEATH
    Bride      DONNA BOW
    Marriage Date      06/07/1975
    Page Number      394
    Ref. Book Number      273.
  3. [S80] Interview, Donna Shaw, Interview date Aug. 22, 2009 at the Bow Family Reunion in Greenfield, IN at Jerry Bow's house.
  4. [S68] Marion County, IN Marriage Records, online, Marriage Record Number      9706471
    Groom      BOBBY E SHAW
    Bride      DONNA J LEATH
    Application Date      10/01/1997
    In State      Y
    Date License Picked Up      10/01/1997
    Marriage Official      RAYMOND C AUSTIN
    Official Title      PASTOR
    Marriage Date      10/11/1997
    Clerk of the Marion Circuit Court      SARAH M. TAYLOR.
  5. [S82] Facebook, online, From a posting on Denise Bow's timeline; Verified by: Deanna Dollinger, Donna's sister.
  6. [S396] Neal and Summers Funeral Home, online, Donna Jean Leath Kennedy Obituary; Accessed: 18 Feb 2022 (…).
  7. [S82] Facebook, online, From Carol Walker Brady's time line; Accessed: 8 Mar 2022 (

Eddie Keith Bow1

     Eddie Keith Bow is the son of Lonas Howard Bow and Betty Jewell Branham.1


  1. [S69] Kenneth R. Scott, John Scott 1761-1843, Pg 119.

Elayna Sue Bow1

     Elayna Sue Bow is the daughter of Jerry Michael Bow and Cortney JoAnn Whitted.2,1


  1. [S82] Facebook, online, Cortney Whitted Bow, posted on Facebook profile page, 21 May 2012, accessed 21 May 2012 (1:12pm EDT, 8 lbs, 11 ozs, 21 in).
  2. [S82] Facebook, online, Courtney Whitted Bow, posted on Facebook profile page, 21 May 2012, accessed 21 May 2012 (1:12pm EDT, 8 lbs, 11 ozs, 21 in).

Eliza Jane Bow1

F, b. circa 1829
     Eliza Jane Bow was born circa 1829.1 She was the daughter of Jacob Bow and Eliza Shuelts.1


  1. [S29] RootsWeb, online, Jerri Stephenson's family tree ("Jerri's Ashes").

Elizabeth Jane Bow1

F, b. April 1848
     Elizabeth Jane Bow was born in April 1848 at Cumberland County, Kentucky.1 She was the daughter of James Bow and Hannah Rush.1 She married Tillman Keeton circa 1866.1

Children of Elizabeth Jane Bow and Tillman Keeton


  1. [S29] RootsWeb, online, Jerri Stephenson's family tree ("Jerri's Ashes").

Ella Faye Bow1,2

     Ella Faye Bow is the daughter of Clarence Newel Bow and Noxie Anderson.1 She married Jimmie Whitehead after 1985.2 She and Jimmie Whitehead were divorced after 1989.2

Child of Ella Faye Bow and Jimmie Whitehead

Children of Ella Faye Bow and James Vaughn


  1. [S69] Kenneth R. Scott, John Scott 1761-1843, Page 117.
  2. [S82] Facebook, online, In a message from Cindy Bow, 19 Nov 2014.

Ellen Douglas Bow1

F, b. 8 October 1856
     Ellen Douglas Bow was born on 8 October 1856.1,2 She was the daughter of John Bow and Elizabeth Williams.1


  1. [S29] RootsWeb, online, Jerri Stephenson's family tree ("Jerri's Ashes").
  2. [S28] Family Search, online, "Kentucky, Births and Christenings, 1839-1960," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 23 Feb 2013), Ellen Douglas Bowe, 08 Oct 1856.

Ellen J. Bow1

F, b. circa 1863
     Ellen J. Bow was born circa 1863 at Cumberland County, Kentucky.1 She was the daughter of LaFayette Jake Bow.1


  1. [S29] RootsWeb, online, Jerri Stephenson's family tree ("Jerri's Ashes").

Ernest Irene Bow1

F, b. 15 January 1904, d. 15 November 1983
     Ernest Irene Bow was born on 15 January 1904 at Cumberland County, Kentucky.1 She was the daughter of Richard Alvis Bow and Martha Ann Scott.1 She married Roosevelt McKinley Capps on 29 March 1925.2 She died on 15 November 1983 at Cumberland County, Kentucky, at age 79.3,4 She was buried after 15 November 1983 at Bow, Cumberland County, Kentucky.4

Children of Ernest Irene Bow and Roosevelt McKinley Capps


  1. [S69] Kenneth R. Scott, John Scott 1761-1843, Pg 116.
  2. [S69] Kenneth R. Scott, John Scott 1761-1843, Page 118.
  3. [S50] Social Security Death Index, Individual Search, Name: ERNEST CAPPS, Birth: 15 Jan 1904, Death: Nov 1983, Last Residence: 42752 (Kentucky), Last Benefit: (none specified), SSN: 304-32-2248, Issued: Indiana.
  4. [S18], online, Ernest Irene Bow, Rush Family Tree, Owner: VictoriaRush10, Accessed: 15 Sep 2013 (

Fallon Marie Bow1

     Fallon Marie Bow is the daughter of Richard Paul Bow and Crystal Sanders.1


  1. [S63] Interview, Lupe Bow, Interview with Lupe and her sister Maria.