Bonnie Marie Austin
Bonnie Marie Austin, 82, beloved mother of Jeffrey T. Austin and Tiffany-Marie Austin-Morrison of Tiburon, CA, found peace on Saturday, December 30th, 2023, after an arduous battle with pancreatic cancer, during which she never gave up and fought valiantly until her final breath. Bonnie was born in San Francisco to Bernard and Marie Klekacz, and raised in its Sunset district, where she attended Mercy High School. She was wed to Michael Austin in 1963. In the 1960s, Bonnie was a stewardess for Western Airlines and broke the hearts of many a passenger with her unmatched beauty and elegant style. She traveled to Europe with baby Jeff to see many sights before retiring from the sky.
Following in her mother’s footsteps, Bonnie was the proprietor of a Marin chain of high-end gift shops, The Collector’s Gallery, specializing various antiques and collectibles. The first (and longest standing for 20+ years!) in Sausalito’s “Village Fair” followed by shops in Larkspur Landing and downtown Tiburon. After, Bonnie worked in several capacities, including at the office of the Ark Newspaper. Bonnie was owner of local family property-management company Austin Property Management.
A resident of Tiburon for over 50 years, Bonnie was the first woman to be president of the Tiburon Peninsula Chamber of Commerce in 1979.
Bonnie was no stranger to loss and challenge. Raising both of her children as a single mother, she worked very hard to provide the best she could for her family, using creativity and ingenuity to achieve what may have seemed impossible to others. Bonnie enjoyed a happy marriage to Fernando Antezana in 1996 only to lose him tragically in 2001.
Despite the difficulties Bonnie may have faced, she always did her best to find the bright side of life and tried to bring light and joy to those around her. She had a remarkable strength that she herself rarely acknowledged. Referred to by many as “the lady in red,” Bonnie is remembered for her sparkling personality, lively spirit, silly jokes and caring heart. She was never one to settle for less than the best or to give up on a dream. She encouraged her family to do the same. She found joy later in life through singing at local venues around Marin and the Bay Area. Bonnie loved being a member of the community and of her parish. She was a one-of-a-kind mom and her loving heart was unstoppable. Her departure leaves a cavernous vacancy in the lives of those who loved her.
Bonnie is preceded in death by her parents, sister Joan, former husband Steven Shigematsu and husband Fernando Antezana.
She is survived by her loving partner of 15 years, William Milavec, son Jeff (Barbara), daughter Tiffany-Marie (Nathan Morrison), grandchildren Taylor and Spencer, sister Janet Jones, brother Bernard Klekacz, and very loved “favorite” nieces and nephews.
Services for Bonnie will be held at St. Hilary’s Church in Tiburon, CA on Friday, Jan. 26th at 1:30pm, reception to follow.