Barbara J. Bonham, age 84, of Baraboo passed away at home on Wed. afternoon, Jan. 28, 2015 surrounded by family. Barb was born in Apple River, the daughter of Henry and Margaret (Murphy) Gehrt. She graduated from Shullsburg High School and St. Francis School of Nursing, Illinois. After graduation Barb, a registered nurse, worked in various capacities throughout her career at the Darlington Hospital, the Mendota State Hospital in Madison, St. Mary’s Ringling Hospital, and St. Clare Hospital of Baraboo until her retirement. She a lifelong member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Baraboo and the Council of Catholic Women. Barb was united in marriage to Francis “Buster” Bonham on April 23, 1960 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Apple River. They had six children.
Barb is survived by her children, James (Valerie), George, Mary Pat, Robert (Jan), Glenn, and Jean Bonham all of Baraboo; six grandchildren, Patrick, Meghan, Marlee, Tatum, Elijah, and Madeline Bonham all of Baraboo; and four step-grandchildren, Melissa, Heather, Rachael, and Jessica Sainsbury. She is further survived by a sister-in-law, Doris Blum; special nieces and nephews; a dear friend and neighbor, Gene Maxwell; her treasured nurse buddies, Evie Thompson and Dorothy Huinker, and many other relatives and friends. Barb was preceded in death by her husband, Buster; a grandchild, Baby Bonham; her parents Henry and Margaret Gehrt; her sister, Mary (Richard) Morgan; and her brothers, Patrick (Florence) Gehrt, Paul Gehrt, and Dean (Adda) Gehrt and other relatives.
Barb’s passion was God, family, praying, and preaching God to family. Her biggest soft-spot was for her grandchildren; she so loved family gatherings, going to church, praying, pets, cooking, baking, going for rides, and sitting outside enjoying God’s beauty on the land she and Buster owned and raised their family. She thoroughly enjoyed the annual “Old Nurses” luncheon with her longtime friends and co-workers. Barb touched many lives throughout her life and made a difference. She was compassionate, genuine, spiritual, and fun-loving, she had a sense of humor and a heart bigger than life. A message from her granddaughter so perfectly sharing grandma “I learned so much from this woman. She taught me the true meaning of family. Love unconditionally with your whole heart. Don’t be afraid to eat anything, even if you only have four teeth. Never ever go a day without smiling, pray always, and my personal favorite, you can never say “I love you” too much.”
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11am on Monday, Feb. 2, 2015 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church with Father Jay Poster officiating. Visitation will be held on Sunday, Feb. 1, 2015 from 1:00-3:00pm at the Redlin Funeral Home, continued visitation will be held on Monday from 10am until the time of service at the church. Burial will follow service at the St. Joseph’s Catholic Cemetery.