It is with great sadness that we regret to announce that on Monday, November 11, 2019, Bonnie Jean, at the age of 75 years, passed away peacefully at Extendicare Maple View after a lengthy illness, surrounded by her loving husband and friends.
Bonnie Jean will be remembered by her husband Dr. Ernie Aleixandre, her mother Reta Gernon (Barbeau), her brother Bob Gernon and sister-in-law Sharon Gernon, by her children Kathy, Michael, Marnie and son-in-law Barry Brindl.
She will also be fondly remembered by her grandchildren Kyrsten, Kayla, Jordan, Devin and Noah and her great-grandchildren Addi and Ryder.
Bonnie Jean was born and raised in Sault Ste. Marie and lived in Korah Township through her early years. Attended Prince of Wales Public School and Sir James Dunn C&VS. Following her graduation, she entered the Plummer Hospital School of Nursing. After receiving her Diploma, she began her nursing career working in the Emergency Department of the Plummer Hospital and not long after to the more responsible position of Supervisor. Her dedication, integrity and empathy did not go unnoticed and was instrumental in propelling her to the management level, becoming the Director of Admitting, a position she held till her retirement.
Bonnie Jean was a great person who added so much to every life she touched. Rarely we encounter an individual with a cluster of so many enviable human qualities. Bonnie Jean was a very loving and respectful daughter, a caring wife, a nurturing and dedicated mother and a loyal friend. Bonnie Jean had a special spot in her heart for the Barbeau family.
Active fails to describe the dynamic and multitalented person she was. With her Husqvarna sewing machine, she was a wizard; her initial accomplishments consisted of making and repairing clothes for the children, piecing together placemats, but gradually venturing into more challenging horizons, unintimidated by the complexity of the task undertaken, and ultimately culminating with the creation of spectacular, intricate and colourful quilts. Some of them have been decorating her room at Maple View. In spite of her constellation of activities, she still found time to get introduced to rug hooking, producing enough of them to decorate the house.
As a northerner, she was introduced early in life to the outdoor winter activities, tobogganing, soon to be followed by skating. This innate inclination for outdoor leisure pursuits easily led to a very popular winter physical and social diversion, skiing. The alpine skiing for the exhilarating feeling shushing down the slopes. The cross-country skiing, for the silent and peaceful Hiawatha forest trails. In the following years a native form of locomotion on snow attracted her attention, snow shoeing. It proved to be extremely useful in order to spend weekends at an otherwise inaccessible cottage.
Travel for Bonnie Jean was an irresistible attraction and becoming a globe trotter did not pose any problem. She traveled far and wide, by air, land and sea. It was a wonderful experience. Touring seaside resorts revealed one not too well known of her many talents, diving. On various occasions, Bonnie Jean donned on the scuba equipment to disappear under the waves and enjoy the stunning beauty of the ocean sights and the coral reefs. Visiting countries with different cultures and traditions, admiring breathtaking sights and the resplendent artworks and monuments of centuries past was food for the soul. The mysterious Orient was transfixing. Her cultural life was enriched beyond belief. On the more prosaic aspect of the tours, the international gastronomy was a delectable adventure.
Following her retirement, the allure of a popular, at times frustrating game, golfing, became and enticing and eventually her favourite pastime. Bonnie Jean was a keen player, proficient and soon golfing became a daily activity while wintering in Florida.
Bonnie Jean was one of those rare individuals who excelled in all aspects of her life. With a captivating smile and disarming sincerity, she was a luminaire in people’s lives. Enjoying everything she did as if there was no tomorrow. Life around her was an unforgettable experience. People like her make this world a better place. Very sociable and gregarious, with a good sense of humour, she was a fascinating storyteller, the perfect hostess, affable, jovial and with her culinary expertise able to please her guests with her extensive repertoire of savory dishes. Entertaining at the cottage, her favourite location, added the flavour of the outdoors on a picturesque lake. Regardless of the engaging occasion, her ultimate goal was always to make everybody happy. The ubiquitous influence of her generous spirit was felt by friends and relatives.
Friends may visit at Northwood Funeral Home Cremation and Reception Centre (942 Great Northern Rd, 705-945-7758) on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Cremation to follow.
Memorial donations to the Alzheimer Society of Sault Ste. Marie would be appreciated.
We would like to express our deepest gratitude for the excellent care Bonnie Jean received since her admission to Maple View. A physically and emotionally demanding task for the Staff, was no obstacle for Bonnie Jean to be treated with such compassionate and loving care. Bonnie Jean shall be missed and fondly remembered till the end of time, because her image is carved in our minds and left her footprint in our hearts.