Robert E. Bonnen


OREGON – Robert E. Bonnen, 94, loving father and devoted grandfather, passed away on Saturday Sept. 28, 2019 in Byron. He was born in Guthrie, Ill., on Nov. 10, 1924 the son of Edwin and Mabel (Johnson) Bonnen.

Upon graduating High School in 1943 he enlisted in the Navy and later transferred to the United States Coast Guard where he served as an Air-Sea Rescue pilot.

After honorable discharge from the Coast Guard in 1946 he attended Illinois State University where he met Betty J. Erickson. They were married on Aug. 30,1947. Upon graduation in 1950 they moved to Gibson City, Ill., where he worked on his Masters while teaching and coaching. He moved his family to Oregon. in 1956 where he served as a teacher and principal until retiring in 1986. Robert was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic church, the Knights of Columbus, and the Lion’s Club in Oregon. An outdoorsman, he built a cabin in Northern Ontario where he spent many happy summers with family. He enjoyed fishing, boating, a good story, and social activities with friends and family.

He is survived by children, Linda (Steven) Landry of Nahant, Mass., Janet Bonnen of Davis Junction, Stephen (Char) Bonnen of Byron, Michael Bonnen of Belvidere, Kathleen (Matt) of Westchester, Ill., and grandchildren, Elizabeth Landry, Amanda (Keith) Labutta, Lukas Bonnen, and Michelle Bonnen.

He was preceded in death by his parents and Betty, his wife of 71 years. 

A visitation was held at Farrell-Holland-Gale Funeral Home, 506 West Merchant Street in Byron. on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019 from 10:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m. followed by a brief service officiated by Robert’s son-in-law, Matt Pozen. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Robert Bonnen Memorial Fund established at the Harvard State Bank in Oregon.