Long time Sonora resident Bernadine “Be” McKamey, 90, passed away peacefully on Sept. 3, 2022, one day shy of her 72nd anniversary to Norm McKamey.
She was born in San Leandro on Aug. 1, 1932, to parents Ford And Mildred Weiss Kitchel. She graduated from San Leandro High School in 1950. Just before she was to start school at Humboldt State College, she eloped and married Norm, who was in the U.S. Navy stationed on the Bon Homme Richard (CV-31). They were stationed in San Diego until Norm shipped out for Korea. Be moved back to San Leandro, and daughter, Debbie was born at Oak Knoll Naval Hospital. Shortly after Norm returned home the family moved to Fortuna, California. Debbie was followed by brothers Mark and Dave and sister Susan.
In 1976, they pulled up stakes and moved to Sonora, where Norm opened Norm’s Body Shop. She and Norm bought a small cafe in Twain Harte, The Harte Dog, which she ran and loved. She was also a teacher’s aide for Twain Harte Elementary School. Her favorite job was being a wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and a great-great-grandmother. After Norm passed away suddenly in 1994, she eventually moved to Soulsbyville in 2002.
She was a dedicated volunteer at the Interfaith Thrift Store. She also found time to share a plain donut at the Donut Factory with the over-65 social group, and who can forget her love of minestrone soup from Pinocchio’s, when on many occasion, when asked if there was anything someone could bring, her response was “if your going by Pinocchio’s …” Plagued by many health issues, she was admitted to Sierra Care Center’s Unit 7 in Jamestown, where she received phenomenal care from the staff.
She leaves behind her daughter, Debbie (Gaylan), son Mark (Trudi), son Dave (Kathy), daughter Susan (Pat), sister Darlene (Karl), brother Ford (Candy), seven grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Ford and Mildred; her husband, Norm; sisters-in-law, Dorothy and Zelda; and brother-in-law Gene.
The family would like to thank the staff of Unit 7 for their devotion to our mother. She will be greatly missed by her family and many friends.
Graveside services will be held at Mountain Shadow Cemetery on September 24th at 12:00pm. A Celebration of Life will be held October 9th at the Miller residence.