RITCHIE, Bonnie Jean


“I was born the second oldest of seven siblings in Norwood, Massachusetts. My parents, Joseph and Mary Ritchie moved us to Oakland, Nova Scotia in 1967 when I was 16. We had summered on Sheep Island in Mahone Bay for many years and I learned my love of the ocean and all things natural there.

I graduated from Mahone Bay Consolidated High School in 1969. An interest in business brought me back to Boston where I attended Bryant & Stratton College and achieved certification as a Legal Secretary. It was a pleasure spending that time living with my grandmother, Emma.

When I returned to Mahone Bay, I started employment with R.E. Hennigar Law Firm in Chester, NS. I enjoyed my position and colleagues there for over 10 years and I was taxed with establishing the first title search department on the east coast.

During these years, I continued education with an appraisal course at Dalhousie, various computer courses, woodworking and painting lessons. I loved my herb gardens, and the landscaping they required. My childhood adventures on the Island and my many hours of boating inspired much of what I painted. I’ve painted thousands of greeting cards!

I was married for 20 years and helped to raise a stepdaughter. I ran the business of a custom carpentry company with a payroll of 20. It was always a pleasure meeting and sharing the building experiences of first time home owners.

I moved to Lilydale in 1994 to live with my sister, Martha and her family. I continued freelance work. My dad was Justice of the Peace and he often needed legal document work. My mother and brothers owned Ritchie Rentals and sales in Bridgewater and I worked in an accounting capacity with them.

In 1997, I moved to Lunenburg where I lived happily on the Dana L. Sweeny Funeral Home property. I enjoyed my friends at the funeral home and in a work capacity as well doing various duties for almost 20 years.”

In 2018, Bonnie built and settled into a tiny home in Lilydale next to her sister’s family where she spent her last years, enjoying the natural surroundings and wildlife. Painting a canvas, greeting card, the side of a barn, or the mural on a bedroom wall became a passion for her. She enjoyed her family’s company, always making sure the cookie jar was full and always most happy when her grand nieces and nephews came to visit. Gardening, preserving, sewing and always painting kept her happy as she shared her quiet home with her cat, Finn.

Bonnie was predeceased by her parents, Mary and Gordon Ritchie and her sister, Linda and brothers, Todd and Scott. She is survived by her siblings, Martha (Peter) Kinley, David (Wanda), Ritchie and Peter (Julia) Ritchie; nieces and nephews, Jennifer (Chris), Jason, Ryan, Adam, Megan, Joseph (Kayla), John (Alyssa), Emma (Zackary), Harriet; great nieces and great nephews, Jimmy, Noah, Harrison, Liam, Scott, Michael, Evelyn, Isabel and Hannah and aunt, Claire McCarty.

Bonnie beat Cancer in 2012 and enjoyed general good health thereafter until this terrible disease returned midway through 2022. Her family wishes to recognize Dr. Heather Robertson, EMS first responders and the staff at South Shore Regional Hospital. For their dedication and care in her final weeks.

Cremation has taken place. In lieu of a funeral a gathering of family will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers those desiring may make memorial donations in Bonnie’s memory to the Canadian Cancer Society. www.sweenyfuneralhome.ca

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