Updated: May 4
It is with great sadness that the family of Robert James Bonin announces his death after a short illness, on Wednesday, April 26th at the age of 66.
Robert was born in Detroit, Michigan and was raised in Farmington Hills, Michigan by his wonderful parents, the late James Joseph Bonin and Betty Lucille Maclachlan Bonin. He was a graduate of the University of Detroit and Columbia University and had lived in Abingdon, Virginia for the last twenty-one years. He often remarked that he was born in the North but got to the South as soon as he could.
He is survived by his loving wife, Mindy Bonin, and his son, Ashby Bonin who was a constant source of pride and joy. In addition to his wife and son, he is survived by a father-in-law, Glenn Hines and a brother-in-law, Mike (Cindy) Hines both of Lexington, Kentucky; several dear cousins and two special friends, Gary Chappell and Jack Catenac, both of Michigan. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his mother-in-law, Judie Hines and his sister-In-law, Debbie Berryman both of Lexington, Kentucky and many aunts and uncles who played a loving and prominent role in his life.
Robert was an entrepreneur and had engineered many unique items and had patented several items for military use. He was honored to have provided over 500 care packages at Christmas for both Army and Marine troops who were enduring hardships during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and were not likely to receive anything from home during this period. His admiration and respect for the military stemmed from his Dad and Uncles who had served their country during WWII; including his uncle, Victor Bonen, who received a Purple Heart for his heroism as a Marine during the battle at Iwo Jima.
He was a loyal friend, and had a generous and kind heart that will be remembered by all that knew him best however, his proudest title was “Dad” and that’s where he shined brightest. He had a lifelong passion for knowledge and enjoyed history, politics and reading. It was not unusual for him to have three or more books going at one time. He was also a wonderful cook and loved to try new recipes but was extremely sentimental about family recipes and traditions. He enjoyed the outdoors and taking trips to the beach with his family and he especially enjoyed trout fishing and was looking forward to using his canoe to fish Watauga Lake this year.
Above all, and most importantly, he loved the Lord and was a devout Christian. He had served as an Elder at Sinking Springs Presbyterian Church in Abingdon, Virginia and currently was attending Westminster Presbyterian Church in Johnson City, Tennessee where he planned to transfer his membership.
Visitation will be held on Tuesday, May 2nd beginning at 5 p.m. followed by the funeral services at 7.p.m. at Frost Funeral Home located at, 250 East Main Street, Abingdon, VA. Graveside services will be held on Wednesday, May 3rd at 11 a.m. at Greendale Chapel Cemetery located at 16397 Rich Valley Road in Abingdon, Virginia.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory are suggested to Alliance Defending Freedom, Faith in Action Food Bank in Abingdon, Virginia or Samaritan’s Purse.
“But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope.” 1Thessalonians 4:13