My dad, Gus Petsas, and Donnie and have been good friends for decades. I remember one sermon illustration when Donnie had my dad come up on stage to show how the angel disabled Jacob’s hip. Donnie did a karate chop to my dad’s hip and he fell down HARD. I was furious at Donnie for hurting my old dad until my dad laughed about it afterward and said it was all an act. I still was mad a Donnie for a while (because my dad is NOT that good of an actor) 😉
Another time a few years back, we attended a charity event and Donnie was the guest speaker. Well, it was for a recovery center and one of the men who was giving his testimony apparently hadn’t “fully” recovered. As he shared his slurred and blurry-eyed speech, Donnie, who was sitting next to me, kept getting redder and redder until he just couldn’t hold back a chuckle and a few hilarious comments under his breath. That was the last time I saw Donnie and it certainly is how I’m going to remember him – full of laughter, love, and with that great sense of humor.
He was a great man of God and I am so grateful to have known him. I know life has been tough, but I just hope God will show Donnie all of these incredible comments and memories that so many have of him.