Obituary of Bonnie Shipley Eldridge
Bonnie Shipley Eldridge was born to Wally and Charlotte Shipley in Los Angeles, CA in 1951. She was raised in West Covina, CA, graduated from Laguna Beach High School in 1969, graduated from Cal State Irvine in 1975 with a BA in Psychology, and graduated from Sacramento City College- Dental Hygiene School in 1983. Bonnie met Steve Eldridge in 1970 and they married in 1975. They enjoyed 43 years together. They lived in Nevada County for more than 35 years, recently moving to Whidbey Island, Washington, fulfilling their dream of living by the ocean again. There was the added bonus of having Bonnie’s brother, sister, and brother-in-law just minutes away. The stories of her life are endless but the most important story is the one she lived daily with Steve. There was a look of love in Bonnie’s eyes whenever she shared anything about Steve. Their love for each other was evident to all and it was entertaining to observe their interactions with each other. Cross words were few and deep love was abiding. During Bonnie’s career as a dental hygienist, she became much more than “the woman with a pick,” she became a friend to her patients. She shared her love of travel by talking about the adventures she and Steve went on and posted pictures from her favorite trips on the walls of her operatory. Being an avid reader, she always had a book to recommend or words of wisdom to share. Bonnie was an inspired cook whose meals could rival any fine restaurant. She raised her level of cooking to an art form, sought out unusual ingredients, and would cook for days for a single meal. She had no fear of trying new, challenging dishes and she loved her kitchen tools! Bonnie’s desserts were legendary. Her friends loved to hear her say, “I want to cook for you!” It could be said that Bonnie loved animals more than humans at times. Her dream of becoming a veterinarian was never realized, but she still had a special connection to all living creatures, particularly when it came to lizards and horses! She liked to think of herself as having “extra powers” that made her an animal whisperer. She really enjoyed riding her beautiful Arabian mare Odessa Brava, horse camping with her friends, and riding endurance throughout California. After animals, Bonnie loved books. She was a voracious reader and a member of the Nerd book club for over 20 years. When she picked a book for the group to read, you knew it would be one that would generate lots of controversy and discussion. She was no wall flower and readily shared her opinion (not just on books) even if it seemed a little inappropriate or she used colorful language. She had unflappable honesty! Bonnie was a loyal friend, valued long-term connections, as well as making room for new friends throughout her life. She had a sharp wit and great intellect. She was there for the good times and the tough times, offering encouraging words. Bonnie showed great compassion for those less fortunate than herself. Bonnie lived life on her terms and she left earth on her terms too! She passed with close friends and family at her side and with incredible support from the Hospice Doctor and hospital staff. She loved the outdoors, so when you go for a walk on the beach or you are in the woods riding your horse, take a
moment to remember Bonnie and how she impacted your life. Bonnie was pre-deceased by her father and mother. She is survived by her husband Steve; sister, Beverley Hardcastle and spouse, Bruce Hardcastle; and brother, Robert Shipley.
There is no memorial planned, but if you would like to donate to a charity or organization in her name, here are a few that had particular meaning to her: Wildlife Rehabilitation and Release Center, Grass Valley, CA Providence Colby Hospital, Everett, Washington (She received amazing care at the facility) Sammie’s Friends Animal Shelter, Grass Valley, CA Hospice of the Foothills, Grass Valley, CA.
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