March 24, 1923 - August 19, 2021
On Thursday, August 19, 2021, our family sadly lost our “Mom, Grandma and GG”. Bonnie Banks was 98 years young, with a youthful spirit and positive outlook that she carried with her throughout her life. When family and friends described Bonnie, they would say she was beautiful, loving, kind, caring and classy. Her energetic spirit, and feisty nature made her a true inspiration to many. She never knew a stranger, and greeted everyone with a hug and a smile. To know her, really was to love her. Bonnie grew up in the small town of Buchanan, Michigan. She was the oldest of four children. Her family lived on Main Street, blocks from town, and she enjoyed all the quaintness a small town can offer. She fell in love and married her first husband, Skip, at the age of 18 while she was working at Clark Equipment to support the war effort. Tragically, he was killed 2 years later while serving in the Army in World War II. The painful loss and his memory remained a part of her always. Two years later, Bonnie found love again, and married her second husband, Mel, an Air Force pilot in World War II. Their love story was lasting, they were happily married for 49 years. They moved to Florida in 1952 to raise their 2 children, Lee and Mindy. Bonnie loved being a Mom, and she was the best! She carried her love of children throughout her life. When in a store or restaurant, she would always spot the little ones, and bring smiles to their faces with her sweet smile and playful nature. In 1964, she started working at St. Petersburg Junior College-Clearwater Campus, and retired 20 years later as the Student Activities Director. Students loved coming to her office to talk, and she loved them all. After her retirement, she devoted the next 15 years of her life to working with the VA to help veterans like her son, a Marine Corps veteran, who suffered with PTSD and mental illness. She became a voice for veterans and helped to establish, and become President, of the prototype Community Support Group at Bay Pines Veterans Hospital. She lobbied for veteran’s assistance in Washington D.C., and traveled to other states to help set up their Community Support Groups. Her respect and support of veterans was unwavering all of her life. Sadly, she lost her beloved son, Lee, to pneumonia when he was just 49, while in the VA hospital. Another painful loss she would carry with her throughout her life. In 1996, after losing Mel to cancer, she started her next “chapter” when she moved to Georgia to be with her daughter, Mindy, and her family. Bonnie loved all the time they would spend together, and all the joys a growing family can bring. She was able to see her grandchildren grow up, and the births of her 3 great-grandchildren. Over the years, she and Mindy would take annual trips back to the beach in Florida, and to Harrah’s Cherokee Casino. They just enjoyed spending time together, and created many wonderful memories to cherish. She joined the Indian Hills Country Club, and was a member of the Women’s Niners Club. She regained her love of golf, playing several days a week. She even decided to decorate her townhouse in full golf theme, reflecting her fun and spunky spirit. Bonnie loved her years at the Club, and made many lasting friendships. She played golf until the age of 91. She moved to Historic Roswell Place at the age of 92, and became an Ambassador who made new residents feel welcome to the community. The setting was reminiscent of her small town childhood, and she was very happy there – she loved the HRP team, and they loved her! Bonnie is survived by her daughter, Mindy Banks Sulhoff, son-in-law, Greg Sulhoff. Grandchildren, Brett Sulhoff, Tiffany Sulhoff Peeler, grandson-in-law, Brad Peeler, and Vinny Banks. Great-grandchildren, Addison Peeler, Josslyn Peeler, and Colton Peeler. Bonnie was a light – warm and bright. Her smile was contagious, and you could not help but be happy in her presence. She made you feel good. She was quick to say “I love you, Honey” or offer a compliment. She was the first to give to those in need. She always had a smile on her face, no matter what came her way. Her beautiful spirit was like no other. Bonnie will be missed by all who knew her, but we are all thankful for the many wonderful years we had together!
On Thursday, August 19, 2021, our family sadly lost our “Mom, Grandma and GG”. Bonnie Banks was 98 years young, with a youthful spirit and positive outlook that she carried with her throughout her life. When family and friends... View Obituary & Service Information
Obituary & Service
On Thursday, August 19, 2021, our family sadly lost our “Mom,...View More
Flowers & Gifts
Send flowers to the Banks family.Send Flowers