Donahue, Ellin


Ellin "Ellie" (Flaherty) Donahue passed away on Sunday surrounded by her children and her husband.

Ellie was born in Woburn, Massachusetts to Dr. Albert and Margaret Flaherty. The fifth of their six children, she grew up in Woburn and spent her summers at Hampton Beach, N.H. where she developed life-long friendships and found a place so special, that she later became engaged to her future husband there.

Ellie graduated from Woburn High School and continued to Cardinal Cushing College. She worked at New England Telephone, where she made wonderful friends and had an enviable work wardrobe.

She married her great love David Donahue in January 1969 and they went on to have five children together. In 1981, they moved from Massachusetts to Peachtree Corners, Georgia. She made many friends in her new environment and was considered a surrogate mother by her children's friends.

Ellie worked part time at Peachtree Elementary as the school's "Ice Cream Lady" where she became cherished by generations of Peachtree Elementary students as "Miss Ellie."

Through selling ice cream, she also gave support: an encouraging word to an anxious student, a compassionate ear to a frazzled teacher or a high five to the custodial staff. Ellie never met a person that she didn't somehow make happier for having spoken with her. She called these moments of compassion and connection, "ice cream moments."

During her retirement, Ellie deepened her connection to her community by making friends with everyone from the people in her chair yoga class at the YMCA to the check-out staff of Publix to the manager of her local Belk. Even throughout her illness, she kept up with her friends and family virtually by means of "The Book" (Facebook). Ellie took great joy in her Faith and having all her children under her roof.

Ellie is survived by David, her husband of fifty-three years, children Erin Donahue and fiancé Jason Smith of Johns Creek, Kim (Donahue) McCormick (Todd) of Danville, N.H., Amy Donahue of Peachtree Corners, Meg Donahue of Macon, Patrick Donahue (Allie) of Chamblee, grandchildren Ellie, Maggie and Jillie of Danville, N.H. sister Judith Flaherty of Hampton Beach, N.H. brother Robert Flaherty of Natick, Mass and numerous nieces and nephews and grandnieces and grandnephews.

A funeral mass will be held on Friday at 10:30 AM at St. Jude's Catholic Church. Burial will follow at Peachtree Memorial Park, Peachtree Corners, GA. The family will gather with friends on Thursday from 4:00 PM until 8:00 PM at Crowell Brothers Funeral Home.

The family requests that all of Ellie's family and friends seek out their own moments of compassion and connection with others: their own "ice cream moments." Love you. Love you. Love you.

Online condolence may be expressed at

Arrangements entrusted to Crowell Brothers Funeral Homes & Crematory, 5051 Peachtree Industrial Boulevard, Peachtree Corners, GA 30092. 770-448-5757.

Funeral Home Information

Crowell Brothers Funeral Homes & Crematory