Bonnie Jean Riffle, 88, of Newark, went home to be with the Lord on Wednesday, February 5, 2020.
Bonnie was born on December 26, 1931 in White Cottage, Ohio, the third child of Merle and Minnie (Perry) Castor. An unmistakable “people person,” everyone who knew her can recall her fond recounting of the humorous and heart-warming stories of her escapades with her beloved big brother, Bud. Some of her fondest childhood memories were of growing up in Fultonham and of visiting her father while he worked the farm.
Bonnie married her first husband, John W. Copen, in 1949. Together, they had six children; Donald, John, Larry, Danny, Douglas and Darren. The family traveled often, living in several western states, most notably California, before returning to Ohio. After John’s passing in 1982, Bonnie met and eventually married Wilfred E. Riffle (Jim). The two were happily married for 17 years, until Jim’s passing in 2000. Bonnie was a prolific writer and penned volumes of poetry, often winning contests and publication with her pieces. She was an avid “foodie,” continuously looking for recipes, adding her own twist, discussing cooking techniques and flavors with all of us. She often won contests for her culinary entries, with many recipes published in area papers and national magazines. Ardently interested in fashion and cosmetics, her hair, nails, makeup and outfits were always flawless; she often sewed for herself what she could not find in a store. Besides these interests, Bonnie also learned to play guitar in her mid-life and enjoyed writing songs about life, nature and faith.
Bonnie is survived by her six sons and her step-daughter Brenda Hammond, and their spouses; 26 grandchildren; 43 great-grandchildren and 9 great-great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her grandson, Kevin Hammond; great-grandson, Daniel Copen; sisters, Ruth Haines and Betty (Joan) Murphy; and brothers, Sherman (Bud) Castor, Douglas Castor, and Frank Bennett.
Friends may call from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, February 9, 2020 at the Bope-Thomas Funeral Home in Somerset where services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, February 10, 2020 with Pastor Doug Copen officiating. Burial will be held in Somerset Cemetery at a later date.