passed away suddenly of natural causes on Tuesday, May 11, 2021,
shortly after moving to Crescent City to live with her son, Kevin and
daughter-in-law, Elisa. She had been with them several weeks, and it
was such a content and happy time for her. It was a welcome change
that she embraced, letting us all know she loved being there.
Valerie was born August 9, 1933 to Gilbert and Harriet Shirley in Eureka, California. She was a graduate of Eureka High School. On August 23, 1952, she married her high school sweetheart, Edward Mario Bognuda. Valerie never learned to drive and was content staying busy as a wife and homemaker with her and Ed’s four children: Gary, Kevin, Karen and Brian. Valerie was a devoted, loving and generous Mom! Valerie stayed active in her children‘s endeavors, supporting her sons in various racing activities and her daughter with her horse in gymkhanas. Even when their interests moved on to more challenging sports and other ventures, Valerie’s love and support never wavered!
There are many highlights of Valerie’s life. One is she personally lighted up at any casino, especially Bear River where she often came home a lucky winner! Another highlight was her telephone. Since she lived alone before moving to Crescent City, she took full advantage of her telephone. She rarely let a day pass when she wasn’t checking in on her family and extended family, making sure all were well and happy. Valerie loved baseball and also watched the same soap opera “over the phone” with her sister-law, Liv for years! Valerie would also talk about the cruise her and Ed took to the Caribbean for two weeks in 1976. It was a special occasion for her and Ed.
Although Valerie and Ed’s lives took separate paths, they remained close friends later in life. They were always present at family gatherings and talked regularly on the phone. They were a wonderful example for their children. During the last fourteen years, Valerie lived in Salmon Creek, Miranda, where she was in close proximity to her son, Brian and daughter, Karen and their families. She loved being close to her children and grandchildren while watching the changes in their lives.
Valerie is survived by her children, Gary (Marci), Kevin (Elisa), Karen (Scott) Argo, and Brian (Sandee); grandchildren, Jamison, Ryan, Jennifer (Edgar), Drew (Holly) and Max; two great grandchildren, Malia and Klayden; sister, Barbara Slade; nieces, Judy (John) Bertain, Vicki (Vaughn) Butler, and Shari Doer; nephews, Troy and Darren Ghisetti; and sister-in-law, Livia Manfredda. Valerie was preceded in death by her former husband, Edward; parents, Gilbert and Harriet; step-mom, Lee Shirley; step-sister, Connie Ghisetti; and in-laws on both sides that Valerie loved dearly.
On Tuesday, May 25, 2021, a public viewing will be held at Sanders Funeral Home at 11 a.m., followed by an outdoor memorial service at 1 p.m at the Veteran’s Ocean View Cemetery in Eureka. Pastor David Groe will be officiating.
The obituary above was submitted on behalf of Valerie Bognuda’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.