Bonnie Russell

Obituary of Bonnie Russell

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BONNIE JEAN HEDMAN/HARDISON/RUSSELL May 31, 1940 - June 28, 2024 1940 - 1958 Born at Tacoma General Hospital and living in Shelton, WA, Bonnie, a long-time resident of the Shelton area, was known for her quick wit and mischievous spirit. Growing up at Cushman, while her dad worked on the dam project and her mom drove the school bus, Bonnie was close to her brother Harvey, and they both filled their days with laughter and playful antics. With Harvey, being two years older, they often shared stories about growing up. One favorite story was when, as toddlers, Harvey placed little Bonnie into the passenger seat of their dad's car. Harvey crawled into the driver's seat and played with the gear shift. Soon, the vehicle was rolling down the hill, to the delight of the two youngsters, even when the vehicle rolled into a ditch they laughed. Bonnie's family fondly remembers her as the "jokester" of the household with a big smile and full of laughter. Bonnie comes from a family with a long history in Mason County, Washington. Before settling in the area, many Craig family members used the Cushman residence as the transitional home. Craig Road, which partially parallels Highway 101, was named after her Uncle Harry Craig and Aunt Marge, and Uncle Varney Craig. Her grandmother, Ora (Chestnut) Craig, was also a part of the family's local history on Craig Road. The family began to settle elsewhere when Uncle Harry moved again, and this time out by Lost Lake to the Cloquallum farmland, today called the Cloquallum Ranch, before relocating to Montesano to establish an infamous butcher and meat shop. He was best friends with Glen Probst and family of Shelton’s Home Meats. Bonnie stayed at various times at all these places with family, noting as her niece Crystal (Hedman) Perry stated, “It was like the family had a built-in childcare system.” Bonnie's mother, Beulah, purchased the current homestead three miles from her brother out Cloquallum Road. At times as a teen, Bonnie even stayed alone at the home with an outhouse during her high school year. She fondly shared stories of walking or bicycling to Lost Lake to swim and sunbathe. During these excursions, Bonnie Hedman met Donald Hardison, who lived nearby and worked at her Uncle Harry's farm. She also had a premonition about a mysterious man she witnessed from a dock beside the boat launch who heroically dove into Lost Lake to retrieve the body of a young female who tragically drowned after a boating accident. Bonnie would meet this man later in life. The family was close-knit. Bonnie's Uncle Charles and Aunt Cleo lived in Agate before relocating to nearby areas to raise dairy cattle. Aunt Marcelle (Craig) and her husband Emmett Krefting were sole owners of Phillips Lake before dividing it into properties. The generational family connectedness and​ tradition continue with annual family reunions on the Beulah homesteaded lands, currently owned by Bonnie's two daughters. Bonnie attended schools in the Tacoma area. During her Junior year, she attended Irene S. Reed High School in Shelton, before transferring to Lincoln High School in Tacoma to graduate. She took business courses, sparking an interest in office management. 1959 - 1998 The Shelton Mason County Journal newspaper archive from March 5, 1959, includes a section called Cloquallum News mentioning Bonnie Hedman and Don Hardison wed on the evening of February 28, 1959, at the Tacoma home of Bonnie's mother, Mrs. Beulah Sather. After their wedding, Bonnie and Donald lived on McKinley Hill, blocks from many other family members, before moving to the "white house," where many family members lived on 35th Street. Bonnie worked with an aunt in Tacoma, WA, developing film and typesetting before relocating to her mother's Cloquallum homestead in 1964 to raise her family. In the Shelton-Mason County Journal newspaper dated April 17, there was an ad from Lumberman's in Shelton, WA. The ad stated, "Thanks to all of you for making our 1975 49ers Gold Rush Days Open House a great success, and congratulations to the following prize winners." A winner included Bonnie Hardison, who won 3 sheets of walnut paneling, which led to purchasing dark paneling to remodel the living and dining room areas of their home. To this day, that paneling still hangs on the house walls. Bonnie was deeply committed to her community, going above and beyond for her family. She served as one of the original Mason County Fire District 13 firefighters, dedicating many years before retiring from her volunteer position. In addition to being an emergency medical technician (EMT), she also took on the role of treasurer for the fire district, showcasing her selfless dedication. Furthermore, Bonnie held the position of Fire District 13 commissioner, leaving a lasting impact on the community. Her great- grandchildren are 4th generation volunteer firefighters for District 13, and her son-in-law is fire commissioner. After her daughters grew older, she worked in Elma for EBASCO, a sub- contractor for the Washington Public Power Supply System's (WPPSS) from 1972 to 1978. Her daughter Debbie also worked with her. Following the closure of WPPSS, Bonnie served as an office manager at Ben Franklin Crafts and Frame Shop in Shelton, working alongside family through marriage, Pat Sykora and Mary Walker. Subsequently, she worked at Olympic Tool in Shelton, where she affectionately referred to all the workers, notably the Lund Brothers, as her "boys" or "kids." She also worked alongside training her granddaughter, Melissa, and took part in company baseball games as their scorekeeper and camping trips along the Naselle River. Bonnie cherished her career, but her home and family were the most significant source of pride and joy. As a homemaker, she lovingly raised her two daughters, Dawn and Debbie, and often extended her care to younger siblings, nieces, nephews, and grandsons. Her brother Harvey had purchased adjacent acreage where the niece and nephews, Crystal, Kenyon, and Mark Hedman, were more like her extended children. The Cloquallum Road homestead, purchased from her mother in the early 1960s, was a place of love and laughter where the family was welcomed with open arms. To this day, the annual Craig Family Reunion is held there in July, and conversations look to passing the torch to the 5th and 6th generations and experiencing the beauty of watching the emergent 7th generation. Bonnie Jean was known for her love of dogs and enjoyed having one. Her unduly fondness had been over the years since a toddler with Picklepuss, Tuffy, Tubs, Sasha, Bourbon, Sadie Sue, Cherie, Itsy-Bitsy-Mitsi, Circle, and the infamous by many, Tinkerbell, pictured with Bonnie on her Gotcha Day, October 16, 2020. 1999 - Present In December 1999, Bonnie met the "mysterious heroic man" and married Bill Russell of Shelton. Both were passionate about gardening and gained a reputation for growing enormous onions. The photo of her holding up the giant onions was featured on the front page of the Dixondale Farms 2018 catalog. They donated many onions to their favorite spot, Character's Corner. Bonnie and Bill were members of the Shelton Yacht Club. They enjoyed traveling on their yacht and often fished for salmon, halibut, shrimp, and crab in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Hood Canal, and Puget Sound areas. Bonnie’s home and property were her pride and joy. Everything had its place, and nobody would be surprised to see the interior rearranged, especially after Bill died. Bonnie decorated the by adding. Her favorite color purple. Survivors include her two daughters: Dawn Elizabeth (Hardison) Stevens, her husband Rick, and Debra Jean (Hardison) Hoxit; four grandchildren: Rick Stevens, Jr. and his wife Kady (Rollins), Melissa (Stevens) Puhn and her husband Joe, Chris Hoxit and his wife Chelsi (Claussen), and Jason Hoxit and his wife Elizabeth (Monger); six great-grandchildren: Grace (Stevens) Joyce and her husband Jake, Zane Stevens, Clare Hoxit, Braylon Hoxit, Levi Hoxit, and Aubrey Hoxit; Brother Harvey Hedman; half-sisters Alisa (Hedman) Barnes and Lori Hedman; and numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews. Additionally, her first husband, Donald Hardison, and brother-in-law and friend, Dwight (Jerry) Hardison, and others graciously considered as family: Gary Roberts and special friend, Glen Latham, who adorned her home with fresh flowers and balloons. Bonnie was preceded in death by her husband, Bill Russell; mother, Beulah (Craig) Elliott; father, Roy Hedman; sister, Hazel (Hedman) Duncan; and her brother, Kevin Hedman. Additionally, Bonnie had several special stepfathers, including Tommy Thompson, Clarence Sather, and John Elliott, and stepmother Lavonne (Young) Hedman. IN MEMORIA In Bonnie's final days, one could sit outdoors on the deck and listen to Eagles' songs. One adult and two younger eagles were a common sight flying high above, and circling to take our wishes, visions, and dreams to the Ancestors. We know our mom, grandma, great-grandma, aunt, sister, and friend will be with us forever until our paths meet again. Please join the family for a Celebration of Life to honor Bonnie Jean on August 11, 2024, at her Shelton home. Family and friends are invited to share stories and memories, and space will be provided to write down legacies, leaving individuals with lasting memories. McCombs & Wagner Family Funeral Home in Shelton, WA, handles arrangements. “I Love You Mom” “I Love You More” “I Love You the Most’est” “I Love You Forever”
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Bonnie Russell

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Bonnie Russell

1940 - 2024

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