Meet Donna Journey, “The Blue Ridge Gospel Showcase”

By: Vonda Armstrong

Do you know this special lady?  You may have watched her radio Program, “The Blue Ridge Gospel Showcase”, or you may have heard her group, “The Journeys.”

One thing is for sure, when you meet her, you will have a friend for life. SGN SCOOPS Magazine featured her not long ago as the DJ Spotlight of the month.

These questions will help you get to know Donna and her family better.

 

Vonda – Tell me at what age you thought you might like to do radio one day and why?
Donna –  Somewhere around the age of 18I became interested in radio. My Dad was a DJ at the local radio station in our home town of Dobson,NC. He was also instrumental in getting that station switched from an all Country music station to a full time Gospel music station. I would go in and help him cue up records and choose music but I never got up the nerve to speak on air. He would pick at me and say “One day you will talk.” Guess he saw  the potential way back then. My Dad passed away from an aortic aneurysm in 1986 and when I do my programs I still feel him sitting right beside me and cheering me on. Even though Daddy is not here with me anymore the closeness I feel to him when I do my program is priceless.️

Vonda – If you could interview anyone in any profession, who would you pick? Why?

Donna -Temple Grandin
Temple is a lady who was diagnosed with Autism in the 50’s.  She is very high functioning and even received her PHD in Animal Science and Engineering. The reason I would love to interview her is to get some answers about why children and adults on the Autism Spectrum do the things they do and how they feel. Having a son with Autism who is basically non verbal, there are many times when you just need to understand how they are feeling and why they do the things they do. I had the honor to hear her speak before but would LOVE to sit down and talk to her and try to understand Autism a little better.

Vonda – Share Your testimony.

Donna -I accepted Jesus into my heart on March 3, 1873 at the age of 13. My Dad was a preacher and a pastor and we sang as a family. I had been to church all my life and it was hard for me to see that I was a sinner and needed the blood applied to my heart. Sometimes I think when you have always attended church and never done a lot of bad things it is hard to see that you need to accept Christ as your Savior. I remember the tug at my heart and holding on to the pew but when I let go and took the first step, God made the rest of the steps for me. I’ve never been the same since that day. I’ve strayed away at times and made many mistakes but HE is always there with open arms ready to forgive me and give me another chance.

Vonda – Tell us about your son, Ben.

Donna -My son Ben was born in 1994 to a Mom who was an insulin dependent diabetic and had already lost another child at 12 weeks ….1 1/2 prior to Ben’s birth. When Ben was born he was perfectly healthy and mine and Greg’s bundle of Joy. As he grew of course as a Mom and a teacher I watched and monitored his growth and milestones. At age one he was babbling and saying Mama and Dada and then all of a sudden that just stopped and he stopped giving us eye contact and started pushing us away. Red flags started going off in my mind and I talked to his pediatrician and he said not to worry that it would come. Well… it continued to get worse and by age 2 1/2  our baby was diagnosed with moderate-severe Autism. Our whole world felt like it had crumbled around us. The hopes and plans and dreams we had dreamed for Ben were shattered. After a major pitty party and questioning God, Greg and I both prayed for the Lords strength and for God to use our test as a testimony. As we watched Ben grow we noticed that he loved  music and was fascinated with guitars. We bought every kind of toy musical instrument he would even act like he was interested in. When he was 8 years old we bought him his first real child size guitar. He would strum it and try to chord it and absolutely loved it! I told him as he grew that if he would learn to play I would get him a nice guitar. As he grew all our Christmases became musical. He asked for different instruments each Christmas and his Granny, his Aunt Vickie and other members of our family would always get Ben something musical for his gift. Some friends of ours got Ben a dvd that had several lessons for beginners on how to play the guitar. Ben would go in his room and go through each lesson until he had it and then move on to the next lesson. By age 14 Ben had mastered all lessons and was playing on his own. A dear friend of our, Barry Scott helped him with his timing and rhythm. In the meantime I had showed Ben some chords on the piano and he began playing piano as well. So in 2012 after not being on the road singing for almost 9 years, I felt God calling us back into a ministry. We formed The Journeys. I sing, Ben plays, and my husband Greg speaks about raising a child with Autism. Ben is amazing and has been a blessing to so many. Without God nothing is possible but with God all things are possible. We thank God for our blessings every day!

Donna, Ben and Greg

Vonda -How can we book you for a singing?

Donna -Go to our website at www.www.thejourneysgospel.net or call 336-710-3851
Purchase Product? Purchase through our website or contact us at 336-610-3851
Also available at all internet markets as The Journey’s
We also have a FB page “The Journeys“  and you can message me there
Ben has a page called Through Ben’s Eyes  on FB where you can view some of his paintings.

By the way Donna’s Program is on tonight with special guest Doug Corum. CHECK IT OUT!