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Welcome to the memorial page for

Donna E. Davila

July 11, 1934 ~ May 14, 2018 (age 83)

Mrs. Donna Ekstrom Davila, 83, a resident of New Market, Maryland for the past 10 years, passed from this life on Monday, May 14, 2018, after a long period of illness. She was the wife of Dr. Robert R. Davila, her husband of 64 years.

Born on July 11, 1934, in Balta, North Dakota, she was the daughter of the late Rudolph and Inga Iverson Ekstrom.

Donna Davila attended the North Dakota School for the Deaf and graduated in 1952 from the Washington State School for the Deaf. She also studied at Westchester (N.Y.) Community College. She was the first deaf person hired to work at the Reader’s Digest, in Pleasantville, N.Y., and spent eight years as a staff ASL instructor at the Model School for the Deaf at Gallaudet University, Washington,D.C.

During her husband’s service as the Ninth President of Gallaudet, she assumed the unpaid role of First Lady of Kendall Green which included events management and care of the Edward Miner Gallaudet House, home of the University presidents.

Surviving in addition to her husband are sons: Brian Keith Davila, of Silver Spring, Maryland, and Brent Francis Davila, of New York City. On the Ekstrom side, she is survived by two nieces and one nephew, Pamela Amundsen, of Carmichael, CA, Sandra Amundsen, Manteca, CA, and Jeffrey Amundsen, Faribault, Minnesota. On the Davila side, she is survived by an aunt, Rose Marie Davila, of Carlsbad, CA. and three grand children, Brian M. Davila, Lorena D. Davila and Mariana R. Davila and seven nephews and nieces.

In accordance with her decision not to have a public memorial service and in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Robert R. and Donna E. Davila Career Development Fund at Gallaudet University, to the Robert R. and Donna E. Davila Endowed Scholarship Fund at the Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, N.Y. or to the Davila Day School in Chula Vista, CA.

Arrangements are by Stauffer Funeral Home, Mt. Airy. Online condolences may be expressed at

 Service Information

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