Todd Frederick Donohue, Sr.


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Todd Frederick Donohue Sr., 74, passed away at his Sparta home surrounded by his loving family, July 16, 2018. Todd was born in Bayside, New York and attended SUNY Farmingdale where he met the love of his life, Joanie. They began their wonderful life in Sparta in 1967.

Todd had a very rewarding and enjoyable career as a pilot for United Airlines for over 38 years, retiring in 2004 as their most senior pilot. Before becoming a pilot, Todd served in the Army National Guard. Todd’s favorite aviation experiences were his Fantasy Flights, which gave an opportunity for underprivileged and orphaned children to experience a flight. He loved meeting the children, showing them the cockpit, the plane and all the cool sites out the window. Todd said that it provided him the highest level of satisfaction as a Captain with United Airlines, always having a special place in his heart for children. His most cherished time was spent with his family and friends. Together they climbed Mt. Rainier, Mt. Kilimanjaro, and the Matterhorn. They flew over Angel Falls and rafted down the greatest rivers. Todd led his family and friends to places most people only dream about. They explored remote areas of the Amazon River, hiked through the volcano Haleakala, and even took his mom to see the pyramids in Egypt. Together, with family and friends, they visited many wonders of the world and our greatest cities. Todd enjoyed sharing the world he so loved, with his loved ones. There are many stories of Todd helping a friend make a dream come true, always finding a way to help others. Todd himself was a dreamer, and a doer. His family felt that he could do anything. He enjoyed golf, travel, tennis, marathon running, white water rafting, fishing, sailing his Hobie Cat, mountain climbing, hiking, skiing, scuba diving, and the simple things like reading the paper and working around his house. People could count on Todd and have often said that with him, they felt safe. He received an award for using CPR and quick thinking to save two lives from drowning at a local water park. He was written up in the New York Times for his outstanding skill landing a plane with no hydraulics while carrying the NY Giants team. Todd had a kind and generous heart. He was strong, reliable, energetic and he truly loved life. He could be seen in the morning mist on Lake Mohawk skimming along the water in his rowing shell. Ultimately, Todd’s greatest happiness was when he was with his family. Todd will be greatly missed.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 53 years, Joan (Putignano) Donohue; devoted father of Todd Donohue Jr; Mary Stewart and her husband Edward; and Gene Donohue and his wife Bettina. Todd is also survived by his loving grandchildren: Max, Micaela, Annie and Lila Stewart and Alexander and Nicolas Donohue; and sister Peggy Moore and brother Patrick Donohue. Todd is predeceased by his parents Frederick and Margaret (Evancik) Donohue and brother, Fred Donohue.

Friends are invited to celebrate Todd’s life from 3 - 7PM Friday, July 20, at Goble Funeral Home, 22 Main St., Sparta, NJ 07871. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Kateri Church, 297 Stanhope Rd., Sparta, NJ on Saturday at 10:30AM. In lieu of flowers contributions may be made in his memory to: St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105-9959.



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