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Bonnie Rupert


Bonnie Rupert, 71, passed away peacefully on July 5, 2012 surrounded by her children.

Bonnie was born in Massena, NY and grew up in Madrid, NY. She attended the Fisher School and then Madrid/Waddington High School. She attended college at St. Lawrence University and graduated with honors with a Medical Technology degree in 1962.

Bonnie was first employed by the Veterans Administration (VA) Hospital laboratory in Tupper Lake, NY. When the VA Hospital closed, she went to work at Saranac Lake General Hospital. Bonnie went back to school at Plattsburgh State to get a teaching degree. She then worked as an art teacher, and later as a special education teacher, at Sunmount Developmental Center.

During her teaching years, Bonnie received a grant from New York State to develop a teaching technique called the ABC Program. She toured New York giving conferences about the program and how it worked.

Bonnie later became a manager in an ICF in Madrid, NY and then switched over to the New York State Prison System to teach English as a second language to inmates. She was forced to retire early as a result of the complications of Parkinson’s Disease.

Bonnie was a very active woman. She volunteered in the community at events like the Special Olympics, ran the games for the children at CSEA picnics, and coordinated blood drives.

Bonnie enjoyed riding her motorcycle, and even tried skydiving(three times). She took an 8 week trip out west by herself to “see the country” before her Parkinson’s Disease got too bad.

Bonnie moved to Woodstock, Georgia in 2006 and found ways to keep herself busy, in spite of her Parkinson’s Disease. She created stained glass until it physically became too difficult, and then moved on to oil painting. She found that when she painted, her Parkinson’s related tremors subsided, which amazed her. Bonnie also loved to work in her large and elaborate gardens.

Bonnie is survived by her children Benizia (John) Triolo, , Matthew (Audrey) Prashaw, and Bettina Woodard , her grandchildren Sarah, Emma, and Melissa Triolo, Kyra and Savannah Prashaw , and Brittany and Diana Woodard. She is also survived by her sisters, Wanda Hawkins and Betty Dawley, and her brother, Dale Rupert, as well as many adoring nieces and nephews.

Bonnie was predeceased by her parents, Donald and Emma Rupert, her brothers Donald (Bud) and Gary Rupert, her granddaughter Kendra Woodard, and her son-in-law Edmund Woodard.

Bonnie lived life to the fullest. She had a huge heart and a knack for making everyone she met feel special. She will be truly missed by her family and friends. Although Bonnie loved her life and all of the people in it, she was, in her own words, “excited about a new adventure.”

Bonnie requested a memorial celebration of her life to “laugh, sing, dance, cry, and tell stories.” Her family will do so in a private ceremony.

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